TREATIES AND OTHER INTERNATIONAL ACTS SERIES 13095
Sale of Children,
Child Prostitution and
Optional Protocol Between the
UNITED STATES OF AMERICA
and OTHER GOVERNMENTS
Done at New York May 25, 2000
NOTE BY THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE
Pursuant to Public Law 89—497, approved July 8, 1966
(80 Stat. 271; 1 U.S.C. 113)—
“. . .the Treaties and Other International Acts Series issued
under the authority of the Secretary of State shall be competent
evidence . . . of the treaties, international agreements other than
treaties, and proclamations by the President of such treaties and
international agreements other than treaties, as the case may be,
therein contained, in all the courts of law and equity and of maritime
jurisdiction, and in all the tribunals and public offices of the
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Child Rights: Sale of Children,
Child Prostitution and
Optional Protocol done at New York May 25, 2000;
Transmitted by the President of the United States of America
to the Senate July 25, 2000 (Treaty Doc. 106-37,
106th Congress, 2d Session);
Reported favorably by the Senate Committee on Foreign Relations
May 23, 2002 (Senate Executive Report No. 107-4,
107th Congress, 2d Session);
Advice and consent to ratification by the Senate
June 18, 2002;
Ratified by the President September 14, 2002;
Instrument of Ratification deposited December 23, 2002;
Entered into force January 23, 2003.
Optional Protocol to the Convention
on the Rights of the Child
on the sale of children,
child prostitution and
Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child
on the sale of children, child prostitution
and child pornography
The States Parties to the present Protocol,
Considering that, in order further to achieve the purposes of the Convention on the Rights of
the Child and the implementation of its provisions, especially articles 1, 11, 21, 32, 33, 34, 35 and
36, it would be appropriate to extend the measures that States Parties should undertake in order to
guarantee the protection of the child from the sale of children, child prostitution and child
Considering also that the Convention on the Rights of the Child recognizes the right of the
child to be protected from economic exploitation and from performing any work that is likely to be
hazardous or to interfere with the child's education, or to be harmful to the child's health or physical,
mental, spiritual, moral or social development,
Gravely concerned at the significant and increasing international traffic of children for the
purpose of the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography,
Deeply concerned at the widespread and continuing practice of sex tourism, to which children
are especially vulnerable, as it directly promotes the sale of children, child prostitution and child
Recognizing that a number of particularly vulnerable groups, including girl children, are at
greater risk of sexual exploitation, and that girl children are disproportionately represented among
the sexually exploited,
Concerned about the growing availability of child pornography on the Internet and other
evolving technologies, and recalling the International Conference on Combating Child Pornography
on the Internet (Vienna, 1999) and, in particular, its conclusion calling for the worldwide
criminalization of the production, distribution, exportation, transmission, importation, intentional
possession and advertising of child pornography, and stressing the importance of closer cooperation
and partnership between Governments and the Internet industry,
Believing that the elimination of the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography
will be facilitated by adopting a holistic approach, addressing the contributing factors, including
underdevelopment, poverty, economic disparities, inequitable socio-economic structure,
dysfunctioning families, lack of education, urban-rural migration, gender discrimination,
irresponsible adult sexual behaviour, harmful traditional practices, armed conflicts and trafficking
Believing that efforts to raise public awareness are needed to reduce consumer demand for the
sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, and also believing in the importance of
strengthening global partnership among all actors and of improving law enforcement at the national
Noting the provisions of international legal instruments relevant to the protection of children,
including the Hague Convention on the Protection of Children and Cooperation with Respect to
Inter-Country Adoption, the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child
Abduction, the Hague Convention on Jurisdiction, Applicable Law, Recognition, Enforcement and
Cooperation in Respect of Parental Responsibility and Measures for the Protection of Children, and
International Labour Organization Convention No. 182 on the Prohibition and Immediate Action for
the Elimination of the Worst Forms of Child Labour,
Encouraged by the overwhelming support for the Convention on the Rights of the Child,
demonstrating the widespread commitment that exists for the promotion and protection of the rights
of the child,
Recognizing the importance of the implementation of the provisions of the Programme of
Action for the Prevention of the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography and the
Declaration and Agenda for Action adopted at the World Congress against Commercial Sexual
Exploitation of Children, held at Stockholm from 27 to 31 August 1996, and the other relevant
decisions and recommendations of pertinent international bodies,
Taking due account of the importance of the traditions and cultural values of each people for
the protection and harmonious development of the child,
Have agreed as follows:
States Parties shall prohibit the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography as
provided for by the present Protocol.
For the purpose of the present Protocol:
(a) Sale of children means any act or transaction whereby a child is transferred by any
person or group of persons to another for remuneration or any other consideration;
(b) Child prostitution means the use of a child in sexual activities for remuneration or any
other form of consideration;
(c) Child pornography means any representation, by whatever means, of a child engaged
in real or simulated explicit sexual activities or any representation of the sexual parts of a child for
primarily sexual purposes.
1. Each State Party shall ensure that, as a minimum, the following acts and activities are fully
covered under its criminal or penal law, whether these offences are committed domestically or
transnationally or on an individual or organized basis:
(a) In the context of sale of children as defined in article 2:
(i) The offering, delivering or accepting, by whatever means, a child for the purpose of:
a. Sexual exploitation of the child;
b. Transfer of organs of the child for profit;
c. Engagement of the child in forced labour,
(ii) Improperly inducing consent, as an intermediary, for the adoption of a child in
violation of applicable international legal instruments on adoption;
(b) Offering, obtaining, procuring or providing a child for child prostitution, as defined in
(c) Producing, distributing, disseminating, importing, exporting, offering, selling or
possessing for the above purposes child pornography as defined in article 2.
2. Subject to the provisions of a State Party's national law, the same shall apply to an attempt to
commit any of these acts and to complicity or participation in any of these acts.
3. Each State Party shall make these offences punishable by appropriate penalties that take into
account their grave nature.
4. Subject to the provisions of its national law, each State Party shall take measures, where
appropriate, to establish the liability of legal persons for offences established in paragraph 1 of the
present article. Subject to the legal principles of the State Party, this liability of legal persons may
be criminal, civil or administrative.
5. States Parties shall take all appropriate legal and administrative measures to ensure that all
persons involved in the adoption of a child act in conformity with applicable international legal
1. Each State Party shall take such measures as may be necessary to establish its jurisdiction over
the offences referred to in article 3, paragraph 1, when the offences are committed in its territory or
on board a ship or aircraft registered in that State.
2. Each State Party may take such measures as may be necessary to establish its jurisdiction over
the offences referred to in article 3, paragraph 1, in the following cases:
(a) When the alleged offender is a national of that State or a person who has his habitual
residence in its territory;
(b) When the victim is a national of that State.
3. Each State Party shall also take such measures as may be necessary to establish its jurisdiction
over the above-mentioned offences when the alleged offender is present in its territory and it does
not extradite him or her to another State Party on the ground that the offence has been committed
by one of its nationals.
4. This Protocol does not exclude any criminal jurisdiction exercised in accordance with internal
1. The offences referred to in article 3, paragraph 1, shall be deemed to be included as
extraditable offences in any extradition treaty existing between States Parties and shall be included
as extraditable offences in every extradition treaty subsequently concluded between them, in
accordance with the conditions set forth in those treaties.
2. If a State Party that makes extradition conditional on the existence of a treaty receives a
request for extradition from another State Party with which it has no extradition treaty, it may
consider this Protocol as a legal basis for extradition in respect of such offences. Extradition shall
be subject to the conditions provided by the law of the requested State.
3. States Parties that do not make extradition conditional on the existence of a treaty shall
recognize such offences as extraditable offences between themselves subject to the conditions
provided by the law of the requested State.
4. Such offences shall be treated, for the purpose of extradition between States Parties, as if they
had been committed not only in the place in which they occurred but also in the territories of the
States required to establish their jurisdiction in accordance with article 4.
5. If an extradition request is made with respect to an offence described in article 3, paragraph 1,
and if the requested State Party does not or will not extradite on the basis of the nationality of the
offender, that State shall take suitable measures to submit the case to its competent authorities for
the purpose of prosecution.
1. States Parties shall afford one another the greatest measure of assistance in connection with
investigations or criminal or extradition proceedings brought in respect of the offences set forth in
article 3, paragraph 1, including assistance in obtaining evidence at their disposal necessary for the
2. States Parties shall carry out their obligations under paragraph 1 of the present article in
conformity with any treaties or other arrangements on mutual legal assistance that may exist between
them. In the absence of such treaties or arrangements, States Parties shall afford one another
assistance in accordance with their domestic law.
States Parties shall, subject to the provisions of their national law:
(a) Take measures to provide for the seizure and confiscation, as appropriate, of:
(1) Goods such as materials, assets and other instrumentalities used to commit or
facilitate offences under the present Protocol;
(ii) Proceeds derived from such offences;
(b) Execute requests from another State Party for seizure or confiscation of goods or
proceeds referred to in subparagraph (a) (i);
(c) Take measures aimed at closing, on a temporary or definitive basis, premises used to
commit such offences.
1. States Parties shall adopt appropriate measures to protect the rights and interests of child
victims of the practices prohibited under the present Protocol at all stages of the criminal justice
process, in particular by:
(a) Recognizing the vulnerability of child victims and adapting procedures to recognize
their special needs, including their special needs as witnesses;
(b) Informing child victims of their rights, their role and the scope, timing and progress of
the proceedings and of the disposition of their cases;
(c) Allowing the views, needs and concerns of child victims to be presented and considered
in proceedings where their personal interests are affected, in a manner consistent with the procedural
rules of national law;
(d) Providing appropriate support services to child victims throughout the legal process;
(e) Protecting, as appropriate, the privacy and identity of child victims and taking measures
in accordance with national law to avoid the inappropriate dissemination of information that could
lead to the identification of child victims;
(f) Providing, in appropriate cases, for the safety of child victims, as well as that of their
families and witnesses on their behalf, from intimidation and retaliation;
(g) Avoiding unnecessary delay in the disposition of cases and the execution of orders or
decrees granting compensation to child victims.
2. States Parties shall ensure that uncertainty as to the actual age of the victim shall not prevent
the initiation of criminal investigations, including investigations aimed at establishing the age of the
3. States Parties shall ensure that, in the treatment by the criminal justice system of children who
are victims of the offences described in the present Protocol, the best interest of the child shall be
a primary consideration.
4. States Parties shall take measures to ensure appropriate training, in particular legal and
psychological training, for the persons who work with victims of the offences prohibited under the
5. States Parties shall, in appropriate cases, adopt measures in order to protect the safety and
integrity of those persons and/or organizations involved in the prevention and/or protection and
rehabilitation of victims of such offences.
6. Nothing in the present article shall be construed as prejudicial to or inconsistent with the rights
of the accused to a fair and impartial trial.
1. States Parties shall adopt or strengthen, implement and disseminate laws, administrative
measures, social policies and programmes to prevent the offences referred to in the present Protocol.
Particular attention shall be given to protect children who are especially vulnerable to these practices.
2. States Parties shall promote awareness in the public at large, including children, through
information by all appropriate means, education and training, about the preventive measures and
harmful effects of the offences referred to in the present Protocol. In fulfilling their obligations under
this article, States Parties shall encourage the participation of the community and, in particular,
children and child victims, in such information and education and training programmes, including
at the international level.
3. States Parties shall take all feasible measures with the aim of ensuring all appropriate
assistance to victims of such offences, including their full social reintegration and their full physical
and psychological recovery.
4. States Parties shall ensure that all child victims of the offences described in the present
Protocol have access to adequate procedures to seek, without discrimination, compensation for
damages from those legally responsible.
5. States Parties shall take appropriate measures aimed at effectively prohibiting the production
and dissemination of material advertising the offences described in the present Protocol.
1. States Parties shall take all necessary steps to strengthen international cooperation by
multilateral, regional and bilateral arrangements for the prevention, detection, investigation,
prosecution and punishment of those responsible for acts involving the sale of children, child
prostitution, child pornography and child sex tourism. States Parties shall also promote international
cooperation and coordination between their authorities, national and international non-governmental
organizations and international organizations.
2. States Parties shall promote international cooperation to assist child victims in their physical
and psychological recovery, social reintegration and repatriation.
3. States Parties shall promote the strengthening of international cooperation in order to address
the root causes, such as poverty and underdevelopment, contributing to the vulnerability of children
to the sale of children, child prostitution, child pornography and child sex tourism.
4. States Parties in a position to do so shall provide financial, technical or other assistance
through existing multilateral, regional, bilateral or other programmes.
Nothing in the present Protocol shall affect any provisions that are more conducive to the
realization of the rights of the child and that may be contained in:
(a) The law of a State Party;
(b) international law in force for that State.
1. Each State Party shall submit, within two years following the entry into force of the Protocol
for that State Party, a report to the Committee on the Rights of the Child providing comprehensive
information on the measures it has taken to implement the provisions of the Protocol.
2. Following the submission of the comprehensive report, each State Party shall include in the
reports they submit to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, in accordance with article 44 of the
Convention, any Anther information with respect to the implementation of the Protocol. Other States
Parties to the Protocol shall submit a report every five years.
3. The Committee on the Rights of the Child may request from States Parties further information
relevant to the implementation of this Protocol.
1. The present Protocol is open for signature by any State that is a party to the Convention or has
2. The present Protocol is subject to ratification and is open to accession by any State that is a
party to the Convention or has signed it. Instruments of ratification or accession shall be deposited
with the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
1. The present Protocol shall enter into force three months after the deposit of the tenth
instrument of ratification or accession.
2. For each State ratifying the present Protocol or acceding to it after its entry into force, the
present Protocol shall enter into force one month after the date of the deposit of its own instrument
of ratification or accession.
I. Any State Party may denounce the present Protocol at any time by written notification to the
Secretary-General of the United Nations, who shall thereafter inform the other States Parties to the
Convention and all States that have signed the Convention. The denunciation shall take effect one
year after the date of receipt of the notification by the Secretary-General of the United Nations.
2. Such a denunciation shall not have the effect of releasing the State Party from its obligations
under this Protocol in regard to any offence that occurs prior to the date on which the denunciation
becomes effective. Nor shall such a denunciation prejudice in any way the continued consideration
of any matter that is already under consideration by the Committee prior to the date on which the
denunciation becomes effective.
1. Any State Party may propose an amendment and file it with the Secretary-General of the
United Nations. The Secretary-General shall thereupon communicate the proposed amendment to
States Parties, with a request that they indicate whether they favour a conference of States Parties
for the purpose of considering and voting upon the proposals. In the event that, within four months
from the date of such communication, at least one third of the States Parties favour such a
conference, the Secretary-General shall convene the conference under the auspices of the United
Nations. Any amendment adopted by a majority of States Parties present and voting at the conference
shall be submitted to the General Assembly for approval.
2. An amendment adopted in accordance with paragraph 1 of the present article shall enter into
force when it has been approved by the General Assembly of the United Nations and accepted by
a two-thirds majority of States Parties.
3. When an amendment enters into force, it shall be binding on those States Parties that have
accepted it, other States Parties still being bound by the provisions of the present Protocol and any
earlier amendments that they have accepted.
1. The present Protocol, of which the Arabic, Chinese, English, French, Russian and Spanish
texts arc equally authentic, shall be deposited in the archives of the United Nations.
2. The Secretary-General of the United Nations shall transmit certified copies of the present
Protocol to all States Parties to the Convention and all States that have signed the Convention.
NOTE: Only English text of Optional Protocol will be printed in this publication.
I hereby certify that the
foregoing text is a true copy of
the Optional Protocol to the
Convention on the Rights of the
Child on the sale of children,
child prostitution and child
pornography, adopted by the
General Assembly of the
United Nations on 25 May 2000,
the original of which is
deposited with the
Secretary-General of the
Je certifie que le texte qui
precede est une copie conforme du
Protocole facultatif a la
Convention relative aux droits
de l'enfant, concernant la vente
d'enfants, la prostitution des
enfants et la pornographie mettant
en scene des enfants, adopté par
l'Assemblee generale des
Nations Unies le 25 mai 2000, et
dont l'original se trouve depose
auprès du Secrétaire general des
For the Secretary-General Pour le Secrétaire general
The Assistant Secretary-General Le Sous-Secrétaire general
in charge chargé
of the Office of Legal Affairs du Bureau des affaires juridiques
United Nations, New York Organisation des Nations Unies
1 June 2000 New York, le 1 juin 2000