Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Following Up on World's Promise to Protect Youths Recent Murders in Japan Highlight Need for Action

Newspaper article The Christian Science Monitor

Following Up on World's Promise to Protect Youths Recent Murders in Japan Highlight Need for Action

Article excerpt

Japan is confronting a crime that will not soon be forgotten. The bizarre murder of an 11-year-old boy in the city of Kobe is capturing headlines across the country.

A note found with the boy's remains, addressed to police, asked, "Can you stop me?" The taunt raised the possibility of a connection to an unsolved March 16 attack on two elementary school girls in the same neighborhood that left one dead and the other injured.

Here in Tokyo, the disturbing news from Kobe was hard to miss. But a small, one-day conference yesterday provided some reason to be optimistic that society is gradually learning how to protect the lives of children from torment and suffering. A conservatively dressed crowd that included royalty and politicians, civil servants and lawyers, diplomats and academics squeezed into an elegant but undersized auditorium at the Swedish Embassy. The topic was the commercial sexual exploitation of children - child prostitution and child pornography. This sort of abuse sometimes ends in murders like those in Kobe. Sweden's Queen Silvia has tried to draw attention to these issues, with some success. Her government helped sponsor an international conference on the subject that was held in Stockholm last year. Labeled a World Congress, it drew government officials and activists from about 130 countries and resulted in promises to counteract the sexual abuse of children for money. She and her husband, King Carl XVI Gustaf, are visiting Japan this week, and they spent most of yesterday attending a meeting intended to follow up on the Stockholm congress. The queen spoke at first about "the light in the dark tunnel showing more clearly," but she made it clear that the problem is a long way from solved. Other speakers contributed to the impression that corrective action has begun, even if the commercial sexual exploitation of children remains a worldwide phenomenon with no easy solutions. …

Search by... Author
Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

Oops!

An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.