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Analysis of Article 21

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Chapter Summary

Article 21 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) does not apply to all States Parties, but is limited to those countries that 'recognize and/or permit the system of adoption'. The applicability of Article 21 of the CRC was questioned in the case of traditional forms of adoption. Canada made a reservation in this regard, stating that it would not apply this provision to the extent that it may be inconsistent 'with customary forms of care among aboriginal people'. Article 21 reproduces the general principle of Article 3(1) of the CRC within the framework of its specific scope of application. It provides that 'the system of adoption shall ensure that the best interests of the child shall be the paramount consideration'. While the principle of non-discrimination is focused on intercountry adoption in Article 21 of the CRC, it is clear that it also applies to domestic procedures.

Keywords: adoption; Article 21; CRC; non-discrimination; States Parties



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