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  4. Joint Statement from the United States and the United Kingdom on Combatting Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation

Joint Statement from the United States and the United Kingdom on Combatting Child Sexual Abuse and Exploitation

Release Date: September 27, 2023

Yesterday, U.S. Secretary of Homeland Security Alejandro N. Mayorkas hosted U.K. Home Secretary Suella Braverman at the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in Alexandria, VA to further the significant cooperation that both countries already have undertaken in the fight against child exploitation and abuse. This meeting built on previous high-level engagements across Cabinet agencies to strengthen this transnational commitment, including a statement in 2022 signed by Secretary Mayorkas, together with Attorney General Garland and Five Country Ministerial partners (Australia, the United Kingdom, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States), to commemorate the second anniversary of the Voluntary Principles to Combat Online Child Sexual Exploitation and Abuse and call on tech companies to do more to fight this growing threat. 

The leaders reaffirmed their commitment to work with like-minded allies and use our combined expertise to ensure perpetrators of child sexual abuse and exploitation cannot operate across continents. Our countries recognize that online child sexual abuse is a crime that will continue to transcend borders as technology evolves, giving criminal actors new resources for their modus operandi. Emerging technologies such as generative AI provide perpetrators with the capability to produce an unlimited number of pictures and videos depicting child sexual abuse at the click of a button and freely share this across all corners of the web, presenting law enforcement with new challenges identifying victims in need of safeguarding. As global leaders in tackling child sexual exploitation and abuse, the United States and United Kingdom pledged to collaborate further to drive innovation and invest in solutions to mitigate the risks of Generative AI. 

Finally, the leaders commended the role of organizations that operate internationally, such as the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC), to keep children safe worldwide. The United States and the United Kingdom have, and will continue to, exercise all levers to prevent child sexual exploitation and abuse while bringing offenders to justice. Leaders called on countries, non-profits, businesses, and individuals to do their part to counter online child sexual exploitation and abuse.

Last Updated: 09/27/2023
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