Vilnius, September 2014

Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, UN Special Rapporteur on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography, and Edita Žiobienė, Ombudsperson for Child Rights, Lithuania.

In 2014 and 2015, the Children’s Unit at the Council of Baltic Sea States (CBSS) Secretariat is organising five expert meetings in cooperation with partners in Europe and beyond with support from the European Return Fund. The two previous expert meetings addressed the best interest assessment/determination and the standards, procedures and safeguards in returns and transfers. Reports and documents from these meetings are available here.

The third expert meeting convened in Vilnius, Lithuania on 9-10th September and focused on case examples from countries of destination and origin – and models for follow-up and return.

Approximately 50 experts attended, representing local and national authorities, UN Agencies, national and international NGOs, service providers and practitioners from the Nordic and Baltic States and Member States of the European Union and the Council of Europe. They participated in giving valuable input to the understanding of progress and challenges in transfer and return cases of children. For more information about the experts who attended please see the press release for the meeting.

Organisers: Council of the Baltic Sea States Secretariat (CBSS), the Latvian State Border Guard, Stockholm Social Emergency Center, the Lithuanian State Child Protection and Adoption Service. The project has been granted funds by the European Commission’s Return Fund and CBSS.

A summary of the key outcomes and recommendations, a detailed conference report and Powerpoint presentations are linked below.



Session I: Introduction
Welcome and introductions – Turid Heiberg, Head of Children’s Unit, Council of the Baltic Sea States Secretariat, Sweden
Key note speech: National and transnational protection of children from exploitation
Maud de Boer-Buquicchio, UN Special Rapporteur on the Sale of Children, Child Prostitution and Child Pornography (RemarksPPT)
The case management cycle  
Daja Wenke, International Child Rights Expert (PPT)
Session II: Case examples
Judicial control of weighing the child’s best interest in administrative decisions
Peter Banda, Judge, District Court of Overijssel, Netherland (Remarks) (Case)
Panel I: Return of children victims of trafficking 
Case Example: Girl from Lithuania trafficked to Norway for exploitation in criminal activities (PPT)
Odeta Tarvydiene, Director, State Child Rights Protection and Adoption Service, Lithuania
Linda Ervik, Nordic Liaison Officer, Norwegian Embassy, Bulgaria
Rita Augutiene, Project Manager, IOM, Lithuania
Jolita Juskeviciene, Kaunas region coordinator for “Aid to the Victims of Trafficking and Prostitution”, Caritas, Lithuania
Panel II: Return of child migrants and asylum seekers
Transfers within the EU
Andreea Alina Biji, Project Coordinator, Save the Children, Romania (PPT)
Cristina Dragota, Specialist, Monitoring Assessment and Victim’s Coordination Unit, National Anti-Trafficking Agency, Romania (PPT)
Return of rejected asylum seeking children 
Niklas Andersson Rosén, Team Leader/Expert on Return, Swedish Migration Board (PPT)
Germa Lourens, Social Worker, Nidos, the Netherlands (PPT)
Return at 18 
Emily Bowerman, Senior Programmes Officer, Refugee Support Network, UK (PPT)
Abdul Ghafoor, Monitoring Officer, Refugee Support Network, Afghanistan
Panel III: Cases with children missing 
Yasmin Van Damme, Analyst, Child Focus, Belgium (PPT)
Bente Oftedal Roli, Lawyer, Roli Advocates Firm, Norway (PDF)
Ida Hellrup, Lawyer, Child Rights Bureau, Sweden (PPT)
Session III: Models for return and follow-up
Panel IV: Monitoring Mechanism for Returned Minors (PPT)
Jan Murk, UNICEF, the Netherlands
Frans Bastiaens, Managing Director, HIT Foundation, the Netherlands
Panel V: Models for follow- up in countries of origin/return
Ada Shkurtaj, Specialist, State Social Services, Albania (PPT)
Fried Didden, Director, Kosovo Health Foundation, Kosovo
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