Committee Responsible for Implementing Child Law Failed to Implement the Law, Says Sarhan
2021-11-23 - 3:37 am
Bahrain Mirror: Legal Adviser Ibrahim Sarhan said that the temporary committee for the implementation of the Child Law in Bahrain has failed to implement the law, noting that more than 140 detained children (at the time the rulings were issued) did not benefit from the law.
On the occasion of International Children's Day, Sarhan made several tweets via his official account on Twitter, in which he spoke of "the formal positives of Law No. 4 of 2021 regarding children in Bahrain and the objective negatives of this law."
He said that the formal advantages are that the law includes everything related to children in criminal laws (save some exceptions), in addition to multiple different child-related measures, noting that "it is mandatory to have social and psychological experts present in court."
Sarhan further stated that one of the negative aspects of the law is that it "does not exclude children from the terrorism law, meaning that the terrorism law deems them adults," adding that "criminal accountability falls on children who are in the category between 15 and 18 years old and does not fall on those who are younger than 15, and that the law implements detention and imprisonment under the label of measures."
He went on to say that "the (law) does not guarantee that the child has the right to benefit from legal advice or the presence of a lawyer during interrogation and investigation sessions in police and prosecution stations. It also did not abolish the pretrial detention of children and their treatment as adults," adding that according to the law, "a child would be tried before regular courts if adult defendants were being tried with him."
As for the problems of implementing the law, he said: "The temporary committee for retroactive implementation of the law was only able to implement the law on a very limited number. There are more than 140 children who were tried in their childhood years and have not yet benefited from this law retroactively (according to SALAM DHR statistics)."