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Situation of the children of Ukraine

Recommendation 2265 (2024)

Parliamentary Assembly
Assembly debate on 25 January 2024 (5th sitting) (see Doc. 15901, report of the Committee on Social Affairs, Health and Sustainable Development, rapporteur: Ms Olena Khomenko); and Doc. 15902, opinion of the Committee on Migration, Refugees and Displaced Persons, rapporteur: Ms Sandra Zampa). Text adopted by the Assembly on 25 January 2024 (5th sitting).
1. The Parliamentary Assembly refers to its Resolution 2529 (2024) “Situation of the children of Ukraine”. It welcomes the setting-up of the Council of Europe Consultation Group on the Children of Ukraine, whose mandate covers unaccompanied and separated minors arriving in the member States of the Council of Europe, children evacuated from residential care facilities and accompanied by adults and children accompanied by a parent or caregiver.
2. The Assembly recommends that the Committee of Ministers establish a mandate of special rapporteur on the situation and return of Ukrainian children deported and forcibly transferred by the Russian Federation and Belarus. The rapporteur’s mission should include proposals to facilitate the return of all children of Ukraine, considering their best interests, especially orphans and children deprived of parental care, including siblings, and all unaccompanied children who are currently under the control of the Russian Federation.
3. The Assembly recommends that the Committee of Ministers create and ensure the functioning of a joint registry of individuals who have been included in the sanctions lists of Council of Europe member States, as well as in the European Union’s sanctions list, in connection with their involvement in the deportation, forcible transfer or unjustifiable delay in repatriation of Ukrainian children, and in the unlawful adoption or establishment of guardianship over Ukrainian children. The aims of such a registry would be to harmonise sanctions policy and to monitor and enhance the effectiveness of the imposed restrictive measures.
4. The Assembly recommends that the Committee of Ministers give due consideration to the specific educational, medical and social needs of Ukrainian children. It recognises Ukraine’s commitment to transitioning from a system based on institutional care to one which seeks to ensure every child’s right to be raised in a family environment. It recommends that, when implementing the Council of Europe Development Bank’s (CEB) Strategic Framework 2023-2027, the Council of Europe member States that are Parties to the Partial Agreement on the Council of Europe Development Bank consider the establishment of a comprehensive joint programme between Ukraine and the CEB aimed at addressing the individual needs of Ukrainian children in the arrangements for their rehabilitation, reunification with families or placement in family-based care, and their reintegration into their home country, implemented by the competent Ukrainian authorities in accordance with relevant international standards.