On 16 March, ADHRB has delivered an oral intervention at the United Nation Human Rights Council session 49 under item 3, during the General debate. ADHRB calls on Arrest and Torture of minors in Bahrain.
ADHRB raises to the Council’s attention the worsening reprisals faced by peaceful Bahraini members of the opposition, taking the form of authorities targeting children under 15 years of age, despite the issuance of the Restorative Justice Law for Children.
Bahraini authorities have arrested minors without indicating a reason, forcibly disappearing them and interrogating them without their lawyers and often using physical and psychological torture in order to coerce them into confessing to the charges against them.
To give an example of this systemic practice: Six Bahraini children between the ages of 14 and 15 from Sitra village have been detained since 27 December 2021. Despite the Law on Restorative Justice for children, which came into force in August 2021, they have been denied basic rights. Their lawyers and parents were not allowed to be present during interrogation . They are currently prevented from continuing their education despite several communications raised by their parents and are being held in an orphanage, in a room with no sunlight. Only their fathers were able to visit them for the first time a month and a half after their arrest.
These children, who have been sentenced to a year in prison, must be immediately released to return to their families and education, while allegations of their mistreatment must be impartially investigated. Furthermore, we call on the UN to pressure Bahraini authorities to respect its obligations under the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) to which it is a state party.