Phnom Penh (Cambodia), June 12 (Xinhua-ANI): Cambodia on Tuesday observed the 11th World Day Against Child Labor with photo exhibition and children music festival.
Presided over by Permanent Deputy Prime Minister Men Sam On and Information Minister Khieu Kanharith, the photo exhibition attracted about 700 spectators, most of which are found children and teenagers.
Co-organized by Cambodian Ministry of Information, International Labour Organization and China's Xinhua News Agency, the Cambodian children-themed exhibition showcased around 60 photos, which vividly visualized the dramatic changes of local children's life in the past decades.
Some of the pictures also reflected Cambodian senior leaders' caring to the children, from the monarchy to the country's high- ranking ministers.
The event reflects the government's particular attention to enhance children's rights and social activity participation and it also significantly contributes to uplift the value of children, maintain national identification, and develop culture, Men Sam On said at the closing ceremony of the Music Festival for Children, which is organized by the Ministry of Information.
The music festival provides opportunities to children to show their performing abilities and talents, she said, adding that children and teenagers together make up about half of Cambodia's 14.5 million population.
Khieu Kanharith said that the music festival functions as a platform to promote children rights and to preserve and develop national art and culture.
He said the music festival has been opened since May 22 with 22 children-orchestras from various state-owned and private-owned schools. The champion team will be awarded 2,000 U.S. dollars plus a trophy.
As a result, the team from the state-owned School for Music and Fine Arts won the award.
The World Day Against Child Labor was launched in 2002 by the international Labor Organization (ILO) to serve as a catalyst for the growing worldwide movement against child labor.
In Cambodia, the ILO's most recent global estimate found that around 1.5 million children involved in child labour and about 310, 000 in the Worst Forms of Child Labour, for instance, working in salt fields and brick factories.
Besides the government-organized events to mark the day, a well- known local right group Licadho announced that it will mark the day on Tuesday afternoon in Battambang province to promote understanding of child labor and invite some 500 people to join the event.
The event is to encourage parents, guardians, youths, employers, local authorities, and members of the public to participate in the prevention and elimination of the worst form of child labor, said a Licadho's press release.
As the standard of living rises in Cambodia, more people are looking to hire domestic workers, said Sao Seny, Licadho's senior monitor on child rights. A shortage of labor leads some to hire children as domestic workers, and they are most vulnerable to abuses such as physical violence, verbal abuse, emotional abuse and sexual abuse. (Xinhua-ANI)