Canada Speaks Up for Girls at Global Summit on Ending Child Marriage

July 21, 2014 - Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced that he will attend the Girl Summit 2014 in London, United Kingdom, to bolster global efforts to end child, early and forced marriage and female genital mutilation.

“Child marriage is a global issue that requires concerted international action,” said Baird. “Ending it will empower women and girls, enabling them to contribute to more stable and prosperous communities.”

During his visit, Baird will also meet with Mustapha Sidiki Kaloko, the African Union Commission’s Commissioner for Social Affairs, and Princess Mabel van Oranje, Chair of the Board of Trustees of Girls Not Brides, to discuss child marriage and other human rights issues.

At the summit, Baird will champion increased multilateral efforts on child marriage, including a meaningful inclusion in the post-2015 development agenda.

“Canada is a leading voice in mobilizing global resources to end child, early and forced marriage within a generation,” said Baird. “Strong leadership and the active engagement of countries where this practice is prevalent will be essential.”

Earlier this month, Baird announced that Canada is contributing $20 million over two years to UNICEF toward ending child, early and forced marriage in Bangladesh, Burkina Faso, Ethiopia, Ghana, Yemen and Zambia. For his explanation on why Canada is focusing on this issue, see Why Canada Is Speaking Up for Girls.

For more information on the Girl Summit, see Girl Summit 2014 and follow @HonJohnBaird and @CanadianUK for live updates from London.

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