Committee Name: 3rd Social, Cultural, and Humanitarian
Committee Topic: Female Infanticide
Country Name: Federative Republic of Brazil
Brazil’s Position on Female Infanticide
I. Topic Background
According to the BBC, female infanticide is described as the purposeful killing of girl babies. These infants are usually harmed due to financial instability within their families. This includes cultural factors such as the belief that men are income generators and women play subdominant roles. This misconception plays a potent role in countries such as India and China. With that mindset, male infants are seen as having more financial potential than girls. Therefore making male babies more desirable than females, leading to abortion based on gender discrimination and post-birth killing of infants. . Female babies have twice as high of a chance of not surviving in the first week of birth than males Often times this social standard is tied to cultural ideals, specifically in areas with high poverty rates or with strong bias against women on a community level. These cultural ideals mainly involve dowry cases and pensions. In some cultures and religions, the family of a bride must pay a dowry to the groom’s family, consisting of money or valuable items. Poverty stricken families are unable to pay this dowry in their respective communities, and instead choose to kill their female child when she is born. The death rate of girls is approximately three times higher in rural areas than urban ones. In India, both female infanticide and female feticide- the intentional abortion of a child- are common. As reported by the UN News center, the ratio of females to males in proportionally smaller in India now, compared to past years. In 2012, there were about 914 girls for every 1000 boys. In China, the one child policy states that a family with more than one child cannot receive certain social services or can have their income deducted, increasing the likelihood of infanticide, leaving cause for concern on both international policy and national rights.
II. United Nations Involvement
In 1993, The United Nations General Assembly created the Declaration on the Elimination of Violence Against Women, which stated the injustice of violence on women in any form, including female infanticide. In 1994, the UN more specifically addressed the issue in the “Plan of Action for the Elimination of Harmful Traditional Practices Affecting the Health of Women and the Girl Child” (Resolution 2005/28). This plan directly stated that “female feticide and Female infanticide” are human rights violations. The United Nations Population Fund’s (UNFPA) State of the World Population Report helped to identify the extent of the issue and to draw statistics in countries such as India, The Republic of Korea, and China. For example, The UNFPA reported that about 60 million girls have gone missing in Asia alone, with the possible cause of female infanticide. In the UN drafted Millennium Development Goals of 2015 (MDGs), female infanticide is addressed in goal four; reduce child mortality. This international effort helped reduce child mortality by 47% in 2012. The UNFPA also helped establish the Infant Focused MDG Fund which helps provide financial assistance to child mortality reduction projects established by national governments. UN Women and the Office of High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCR) have also addressed female infanticide. In the World MDG Summit with the topic ‘Every Women Every Child’, these UN agencies and organizations addressed the urgency of the issue and outlined different methods of approaching it. The General Assembly Resolution 61/43 created in 2007, reinstated that countries cannot use customs, traditions, or religious beliefs to subject women and girls to violence. It also urges country governments to develop a comprehensive approach to the issue by regulating laws or preparing amendments. Not only that, but The...
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