The development of ideas about childhood and the rights of children was, in Europe, the background to the UN-centred process of international standard setting for children. Meanwhile there were also developments in the discussion about the theory and nature of rights. As we have seen in the previous section, in Japan too there was a significant amount of discussion of what it might mean to say that children have rights even if this had little influence on the development of mainstream policies towards children until the 1980s. It did however mean that at the same time that discussion was taking place at the international level on the formulation of the international covenant there was also interest in the issue emerging among the domestic ‘human rights community’. There was pressure from them within Japan to have the state ratify the treaty and groups were vocal in demanding its more effective implementation.