An NGO alliance for childrenвЂ™s rights has prepared a report on violations of childrenвЂ™s rights in Azerbaijan.
Presenting the document to media, Nabil Seyidov, the national coordinator for the alliance, said that the organization had carried out corresponding investigations into the issues of juvenile justice (juvenile crimes and convictions) in Azerbaijan.
Participating in the meeting we also members of Milli Majlis (parliament), OSCEвЂ™s ambassador to Azerbaijan, Mauricio Pavesi, the first secretary of the UK Embassy, Colin Weiss, as well as representatives from the Ministry of Justice, heads of different NGOs, and independent lawyers.
The report reflects the results of the monitoring of juvenile crimes, as well as the reasons, which are behind those crimes, the protection of the rights of children and teenagers during trial processes, the state and conditions of detention places, including correctional and reformatory facilities, boarding and founding schools.
The document, funded by OSCEвЂ™s Baku office and UK Embassy, has been submitted to the United Nations Commission on ChildrenвЂ™s Rights, and UN Secretary GeneralвЂ™s program on the investigation of violation against children.
Addressing the meeting, Mauricio Pavesi noted that the report is the first of its kind in terms of the system of juvenile justice, and is about the treatment of juveniles who committed crimes, the violation of rights of the under-full-age by law enforcement agencies, and negative consequences.
The authors of the report have concluded that the conditions of detention of juveniles are unsatisfactory, with the under-full-age facing severe punishment measures, being deprived of medical check-up, legal assistance, etc.
The paper also includes relevant recommendations to the Government of Azerbaijan, urging the authorities to adhere to the corresponding requests.
Government officials, participating in the meeting, admitted to the improvement of the treatment of juveniles who committed crimes.
UK diplomat Colin Weiss noted the importance of investigations into the system of juvenile justice, from the viewpoint of preparation of an alternative report on rights of the under-full-age in the country. He added that representatives of the Ministry of Justice also participated in the above investigations. Weiss praised that form of cooperation, stressing that such practice is not available in many other countries.
The next step, whoever, might be tougher: the United Nations Commission on ChildrenвЂ™s Rights is expected to come up with own recommendations to the Government of Azerbaijan, following a would-be scrutiny into the report.
The British diplomat also praised AzerbaijanвЂ™s commitment to international organizations on childrenвЂ™s rights.
The chairman of the National ChildrenвЂ™s Organization (NCO), MP Gular Ahmadova said cooperation will be developed between NCO and the Ministry of Justice, in the field of the improvement of the system of juvenile justice and protection of childrenвЂ™s rights.