The National Human Rights Commission of Mongolia delivered a request letter, on 9 December 2019, to Mr. G. Zandanshatar, Speaker of the Parliament, in relation to the consideration of the draft amended Law on Naadam Festival by the Parliament.
The request letter recalled that the State has an obligation not to allow children race as jockeys as the rights of child are clearly recognized in international conventions and domestic laws. Furthermore, the Commission also emphasized the urgent need to put an end to this practice, which results in death and bodily injury of children, based on its previous recommendations as well as recommendations from the United Nations Human Rights Council, UN Committee on the Rights of the Child and civil society organizations. For example, the Commission has achieved in including its recommendation in the Government resolution that prohibits the horse racing to take place from 1 January until 1 May every year. Unfortunately, some Parliament Members, who have initiated the draft amended Law on Naadam Festival, included a provision that allows children 14 or above the age of 14 to race as jockeys in horse racing during mid-February to mid-March, the period which was previously prohibited by the Government resolution. This draft law was discussed during the Parliament Plenary session and the Parliament has decided to consider the draft law for the adoption. Thus, the Commission has requested the Parliament Speaker to take action not to include this provision.