Committee Against Torture, session 51 (2013)

Recommendations/observations on corporal punishment in the Committee Against Torture's concluding observations to states examined in session 51 (28 October 22 November 2013)

Andorra

(20 December 2013, CAT/C/AND/CO/1, Concluding observations on initial report, para. 20)

"In light of the State party’s commitment under the universal periodic review to enact and implement legislation that prohibits all corporal punishment of children, the Committee is concerned that corporal punishment is not yet explicitly prohibited in all settings (art. 16).

The Committee recommends that the State party enact and implement legislation that explicitly prohibits corporal punishment of children in all settings."

Belgium

(3 January 2014, CAT /C/BEL/CO/3, Concluding observations on third report, para. 27)

"While taking note of the awareness-raising campaigns organized to prevent violence against children, the Committee notes with concern that the State party has not yet adopted specific legislation expressly prohibiting corporal punishment under all circumstances, particularly in the family and non-institutional childcare settings (arts. 2 and 16)."

Burkina Faso

([November 2013], CAT/C/BFA/CO/1 Advance Unedited Version, Concluding observations on initial report, para. 22, as at 5 January 2014 in French only)

"… Le Comité demeure également préoccupé par les informations concernant la persistance des châtiments corporels en famille (arts. 2, 12 et 16).

 L’État partie devrait: ...

c) Mener des campagnes de sensibilisation sur les effets néfastes des châtiments corporels sur les enfants; et d) Réviser la législation pour inclure également la prohibition des châtiments corporels dans les foyers."

Kyrgyzstan

(20 December 2013, CAT/C/KGZ/CO/2, Concluding observations on second report, para. 21)

"Although corporal punishment of children is unlawful in schools, the penal system and certain care settings, the Committee is concerned at allegations that a high number of children experience violence, abuse or neglect in the family and some care settings (art. 16).

The State party should explicitly prohibit corporal punishment of children in all settings, including at home and in institutions and alternative care settings, and ensure awareness-raising and public education measures."

Mozambique

(10 December 2013, CAT/C/MOZ/CO/1, Concluding observations on initial report, paras. 25 and 27)

"… The Committee is also concerned at reports of corporal punishment (whipping) inflicted by some traditional authorities. Furthermore, it regrets the lack of information on the steps taken to ensure that customary law in Mozambique is not incompatible with the State party’s obligations under the Convention (art. 16).

The State party should:

a)     strengthen its efforts to prevent and combat harmful traditional practices, particularly in rural areas, and ensure that such acts are investigated and the alleged perpetrators prosecuted and, if convicted, punished with appropriate sanctions;

b)     provide victims with legal, medical, psychological and rehabilitative services and compensation, and create the conditions for them to report complaints without fear of reprisal; and

c)     provide judges, prosecutors, law enforcement officials and traditional authorities with training on the strict application of the relevant legislation criminalizing harmful traditional practices and other forms of violence against women and children.

In general, the State party should ensure that its customary law and practices are compatible with its human rights obligations, particularly those under the Convention. In its next periodic report, the State party should provide information on the hierarchy between traditional practices and codified law, especially with regard to forms of discrimination against women and children.

"While recognizing that corporal punishment has been abolished as a penalty for crime and that it is prohibited in penal institutions, the Committee is concerned that it is not explicitly prohibited in the home, schools and all care settings (art. 16)."

Portugal

(23 December 2013, CAT/C/PRT/CO/5-6, Concluding observations on fifth/sixth report, para. 17)

"The Committee welcomes the legislative and other measures aimed at preventing and combating domestic violence (para. 5 (e) above), including the criminalization of domestic violence and corporal punishment of children under article 152 of the Criminal Code and the adoption of the Fourth National Action Plan against Domestic Violence (2011–2013)..."

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