Statement delivered at HRC54 on Item 10: Interactive dialogue with the Independent Expert on the human rights situation in the Central African Republic
The CAR has experienced a number of political and security crises that have seriously weakened its institutions and hampered the country’s economic and social development. The CAR has a new Constitution, promulgated on 30 August 2023, in which the issue of dual nationality is called into question, given that many Central African families are living in exile as a result of recent events in the country. The text of the new Constitution now poses problems for the future of Central African children born abroad.
The activism of armed groups and the military operations launched by the Central African Armed Forces (FACA) and bilateral forces from the end of 2020 until the post-electoral period in the red zones, including in areas that had acquired a degree of stability, have had a considerable impact on the civilian population in particular:
- Former child soldiers lack access to a legal identity for their sustainable reintegration and access to basic social services;
- The rate of children incarcerated in military prisons is rising;
- 24 cases of alleged abuse committed by Blue Helmets were recorded during the reporting period;
- The number of cases of children accused of witchcraft has increased;
- Children with Muslim names continue to suffer social exclusion.
Although the Child Protection Code has been promulgated, enormous efforts are still required for its effective implementation. In view of this worrying situation, we recommend :
- Popularisation of the law on the Code for the Protection of Children’s Rights;
- Increased lobbying of armed groups to release children still detained in their ranks;
- The definition of a national strategy to give former child soldiers easy access to legal documents;
- The creation of a reintegration centre for children in conflict with the law.
Read the full statement (only in French) here.
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