This report is part of CRIN's access to justice for children project, looking at the status of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (CRC) in national law, the status of children involved in legal proceedings, the legal means to challenge violations of children’s rights and the practical considerations involved in challenging violations.
The CRC is ratified but has not been fully incorporated into national law and cannot be directly enforced by the courts. Only children aged 14 and above can make a petition to the court acting through a legal representative and have a right to be involved in the proceedings. Violations of the rights of children under that age can only be challenged by a parent or other legal representative on the child’s behalf. However, all children can complain to the Commission for Minors or other child welfare authorities. Legal aid is available and special provisions are made for victims of human trafficking. There are a number of significant obstacles to access to justice for children in Belarus, including the absence of specialised courts or a human rights institution as well as the lack of well established procedures for hearing evidence from children in court.