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arms and ammunitions were confiscated. The Government is still working to maintain peace in the area. There is no more any fighting in the area and though some arms are still found in some small pockets are believed to be procured more recently and used for other purposes. The State Party does not believe that there is any point around disarmament, demobilization and social reintegration of victims in CHT.

449.The State Party is working very seriously to unearth small arms and light weapons and in recent years, the report of use of these has gone down. The present government has arrested a good number of political activists who possessed unlicensed weapons and cases have been lodged and sentences have been given to many of them. The crack down on corruption, black money and unauthorised use of government property have shown positive results in the country and this will help reduce use of small arms in the country.

450.The Government has taken initiatives in disseminating the CRC, Optional Protocols, Concluding Observations and written reports to a wider audience including the army, educational institutions, the Parliament and the NGOs.

C.  Sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography

451.Bangladesh has signed and ratified the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (OPSC) on 6 September 2000. The initial report by the State Party on the status of the implementation of the OPSC was submitted on 24 November 2005. The Concluding Observations and Recommendations on the Initial Report of Bangladesh on the Optional Protocol to the CRC (CRC/C/OPSC/BGD/1) at UN Committee’s 1248th meeting held on 4th June 2007 and adopted at its 1255th meeting, and responses by the state party to the issues raised by the Committee on the initial report as well as the Concluding Observations dated 8 June 2007, have been taken into consideration in different sections of this Periodic Report.

452.The State Party has very recently received the Concluding Observations on this Optional Protocol and is still analyzing the comments. This present report covers all relevant aspects in different chapters. The Government is committed to the issues covered and will take necessary steps to address those within the shortest possible time. Two observations not covered in the report, are explained below.

453.As regards creation of a separate Children’s Department/Directorate, the State Party’s view is that it may not benefit the children much excepting duplication of some activities other ministries are performing. Rather, a thorough analysis of the situation suggests, effective coordination and implementation of children’s programmes and activities would bring better results. The coordination role of MoWCA has improved in recent years and it will be further reinforced. In future, Bangladesh Shishu (Children) Academy will be strengthened and activities will be monitored through district-level CRC Committees with the help of all sectoral ministries.

454.Regarding setting up of toll-free help line (observation no. 38) this is to mention that in collaboration with the NGOs, a toll-free 24-hour helpline for children is in place now. In few cases, the appropriate authorities have started to take action on complains that started coming through this line.

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