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Summary: This report extracts mentions of children's rights issues in the reports of all UN Treaty Bodies and their follow-up procedures. This does not include the Concluding Observations of the UN Committee on the Rights of the Child which are available here: http://www.crin.org/resources/treaties/index.asp
Please note that the language may have been edited in places for the purpose of clarity.
- UN Human Rights Committee
- UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
- UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
- UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
- UN Committee against Torture
- UN Committee on Migrant Workers
- UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
- UN Committee on Enforced Disappearance
UN Committee on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
UN Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination
Last reported: 29 February / 1 March 2012
Concluding Observations issued: 9 March 2012
Issues raised and recommendations given:
Nationality: The Committee notes with concern the discriminatory provision of the law on nationality, which prevents Qatari women who are married to non-citizens from transmitting Qatari nationality to their children, which has the potential to lead to stateless status of children. (Art 5). (Paragraph 16).
Recalling its General Recommendation 30 (2005) on discrimination against non- citizens and especially its paragraph 16 on reducing statelessness and in particular among children, the Committee recommends that the State party revise its nationality laws to allow Qatari women to transmit their citizenship to their children without discrimination.
UN Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women
Last reported: 13 February 2014
Concluding Observations issued: 28 February 2014
Issues raised and recommendations given:
Stereotypes and discriminatory practices: The Committee is concerned about the persistence of deeply entrenched traditional stereotypes regarding the roles and responsibilities of women and men in the family and in society, which overemphasize the role of women as caregivers. (Para. 21)
The Committee recommends that the State party strengthen awareness-raising measures and studies to effectively promote gender equality and overcome patriarchal attitudes and deep-rooted discriminatory stereotypes concerning the roles and responsibilities of women and men in the family and society. (Para. 22)
Violence against women: The Committee notes with deep concern the high prevalence of domestic and sexual violence against women and girls in the State party. It is further concerned about the gaps in legislation on violence against women, in particular the lack of a specific law criminalizing domestic violence and marital rape; the lack of awareness and training on violence against women among judges, prosecutors, police officers and health professionals.The Committee is further concerned that domestic and sexual violence are underreported, as many women fear losing custody of their children or women. The Committee urges the State party to criminalize all forms of violence against women, including domestic violence and marital rape with no exemptions and within a clear timeframe. (Paras. 23-24)
Trafficking: The Committee is concerned about the prevalence and extent of trafficking of women and girls to the State party for purposes of sexual exploitation and forced labour. The Committee is particularly concerned about: The vulnerability of women and girls recruited as domestic workers to become victims of trafficking; The lack of information on the number of complaints, investigations, prosecutions and convictions concerning trafficking and on the number of women victims who have benefited from existing support and rehabilitation programmes; The criminalisation of prostitution in the State party and the prison sentences of up to five years imposed on women involved in prostitution.The Committee recommends that the State party abolish the sponsorship system for all migrant workers, especially women and children. (Paras. 25, 26)
Nationality: The Committee notes with serious concern discrimination against women in relation to nationality, as Qatari women who are married to a foreign national are not able under the Nationality Law to transmit their Qatari citizenship to their children on the same basis as Qatari men who are married to a foreign spouse. In addition, the Committee is concerned about the risk for children of Qatari women married to foreign nationals of becoming stateless. The Committee urges the State party to amend the Nationality Law to enable Qatari women to pass their nationality to their children and their foreign spouse on the same basis as Qatari men. (Paras. 31-32)
Education: The Committee is concerned about women’s traditional choices of disciplines and areas of study and the low number of women students enrolled in vocational courses as well as in scientific and technical disciplines. The Committee recommends the State party reinforce its efforts to diversify the educational and vocational choices of girls and boys. It also recommends that the State party provide in its next periodic report updated data, disaggregated by sex, on the educational choices of women and girls. (Paras. 33, 34)
Marriage and family relations: The Committee is deeply concerned that: women continue to be denied equal rights with men with regard to family relations; the minimum age of marriage, which is 16 for girls and 18 for boys, with legal exceptions allowing the marriage of girls under 16 years; the permissibility of polygamy and unequal and/or limited rights for women related to divorce, inheritance, custody and legal guardianship of children; and women’s loss of child custody upon remarriage; the requirement to obtain a male guardian’s authorization for women to enter into marriage; the requirement for women under 25 years to obtain the permission of a male guardian to travel abroad, which places discriminatory restrictions on their freedom of movement. (Para. 41)
The Committee recommends that the State party ensure that it protects equal rights of women and men in all matters relating to marriage and family relations, including with regard to their right to freely enter into marriage, inheritance, divorce and custody of children; amend relevant legislation to abolish polygamy, raise the minimum age of marriage for girls to 18 years, to be equal to that of boys; and conduct awareness-raising campaigns targeting women to make them aware of their rights with regard to family relations and marriage. (Para. 42)
Last reported: 5 / 6 November 2012 Concluding Observations issued: 25 January 2013
Issues raised and recommendations given:
Migrant workers: The Committee is deeply concerned about reports of widespread torture or ill-treatment and abuse of migrant workers, in particular under the sponsorship system (kafeel), constraints on lodging complaints against their employers and the lack of information on cases in which sponsors were punished for torture or ill-treatment of migrant workers. The Committee notes the concerns raised by the Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination (CERD/C/QAT/CO/13-16, para. 15) that, despite the legal provisions prohibiting conduct such as passport and wage-withholding by sponsors, the fundamental nature of the sponsorship system increases the dependency of the migrant workers on sponsors, rendering them vulnerable to various forms of exploitation and abuses. In addition, the Committee regrets the absence of labour legislation that protects domestic work, while noting that a draft law on domestic workers is presently under review. The Committee regrets the lack of information provided by the State party on complaints of violence made by migrant domestic workers during the reporting period and whether these led to investigations and prosecutions of perpetrators, particularly in the light of information before the Committee reflecting numerous allegations by migrant workers of physical abuse, sexual violence, rape and attempted rape (arts. 2, 12, 14 and 16).
The State party should strengthen its efforts to provide legal protection to migrant workers, including female domestic workers, in its territory against torture, ill-treatment and abuse and guarantee access to justice. In that regard, the State party should: (a) Adopt, as a matter of urgency, labour legislation covering domestic work and providing legal protection to migrant domestic workers against exploitation, ill-treatment and abuse;(b) Consider abolishing the sponsorship system for all migrant workers, as recommended by the Special Rapporteur on trafficking in persons, especially women and children (A/HRC/4/23/Add.2, para. 95); and (c) Provide data of complaints of ill-treatment of migrant workers filed with the authorities, the action taken to solve cases, remedies provided to victims and the punishment imposed against employers responsible.
Violence: The Committee notes with encouragement various measures begun by the State party, including the Qatar Foundation for the Protection of Women and Children, such as the launch of a hotline and the provision of shelters and legal assistance to some victims. However, the Committee expresses concern over the persistence of violence against women, including domestic violence and sexual violence against domestic workers and, as indicated in paragraph 7 of the present concluding observations, the lack of statistical information on the overall complaints of domestic violence reported and investigations, convictions and punishments meted out (arts. 2, 12, 14 and 16). Para 19.
The State party should strengthen its efforts to prevent violence against women, including domestic and sexual violence, inter alia, by: (a) Establishing effective measures to guarantee victims’ right to complain in relation to violations of the Convention and their inalienable rights promptly and without torture or ill-treatment or intimidation as a consequence of her or his complaint. The State party should work with appropriate non-governmental or international bodies, including foreign embassies, to that end and inform the Committee of its efforts to assess the accessibility and effectiveness of such system; (b) Ensuring accountability of all perpetrators of such acts by undertaking prompt, impartial and effective investigations into complaints, prosecuting perpetrators of such violence and punishing them with appropriate penalties; and (c) Ensuring that all victims of violence against women are provided with adequate redress and reparation, including compensation and the means for as full rehabilitation as possible.
Juvenile justice: The Committee reiterates its serious concerns that the minimum age of criminal responsibility is 7 years inQatar. The State party should accelerate the process of its legislative measures, including the draft law on the children’s rights, to raise the minimum age of criminal responsibility to an internationally acceptable level. The State party should ensure the full implementation of juvenile justice standards as well the United Nations Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice (Beijing Rules) and the United Nations Guidelines for the Prevention of Juvenile Delinquency (Riyadh Guidelines). (arts. 2 and 16) (Para. 22)
Legal safeguards: While noting that article 39 of the Constitution and articles 40, 112 and 113 of the Code of Criminal Procedure provide some legal safeguards to detainees, the Committee is concerned that these provisions are not always respected in practice, in particular for non-citizens, and do not cover all fundamental safeguards required by the Convention, in particular the right to have an independent medical examination upon deprivation of liberty. The Committee also expresses its concern at the lack of information on detention registers as well as the lack of monitoring of the implementation of safeguards, in particular given that the State party stated that it had documented no cases in which the authorities had failed to properly register detainees during the reporting period. While noting the provisions in the Code of Criminal Procedure requiring persons to be charged or released within 48 hours, the Committee remains concerned that detention without charge may be extended by the Attorney General for 16 days.Of further concern are reports on persons detained without charge or trial, inter alia, the case of Mohamed Farouk al Mahdi, undertaken by the Working Group on Arbitrary Detention (A/HRC/WGAD/2010/25) (arts. 2 and 16). Para 10.
The State party should promptly take effective measures to ensure that all detainees, including non-citizens, are afforded, in practice, all fundamental legal safeguards from the very outset of detention, including the rights to promptly receive independent legal assistance and a medical examination by an independent doctor, contact relatives, and appear before a judge within a time limit in accordance with international standards. The State party should also take steps to ensure effective monitoring of the adherence of all personnel to the laws governing safeguards, and discipline or prosecute those who fail to provide them to persons deprived of their liberty as required by law. The State party should ensure that all detainees, including minors, are included on a central register. The State party is encouraged to introduce systematic video and audio monitoring and recording of all interrogations, in all places where torture and ill-treatment are likely to occur, and provide the necessary resources to that end.
UN Committee against Torture
Last reported: 9 / 10 May 2006
Concluding Observations issued: 25 July 2006
No mentions of children's rights
UN Committee on Migrant Workers
UN Committee on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
Last reported: 26 and 27 August 2015
Concluding Observations issued: 2 September 2015
Women with disabilities (art. 6): The Committee is concerned about the multiple forms of discrimination that women and girls with disabilities experience in the State party. It is concerned about the overall lack of information on the social, economic and political situation of women and girls with disabilities, and on the limited participation of women with disabilities in making decisions affecting them in general. It is also concerned that measures to mainstream the rights and needs of women and girls with disabilities in strategies have not been implemented. (para 13)
The Committee recommends that the State party carry out awareness-raising campaigns and education programmes at all levels, particularly targeted at the family level, in order to foster respect for the rights and dignity of women and girls with disabilities, and combat stereotypes, prejudices and misconceptions about women and girls with disabilities. It also recommends that the State party, in consultation with women and girls with disabilities, through their representative organizations, mainstream their rights across the women’s rights agenda with a view to developing policies to promote their autonomy and full participation in society. (para 14)
Children with disabilities (art. 7): The Committee is concerned by the absence of a strategy to promote that girls and boys with disabilities exercise freedoms and rights on an equal basis with other children. It is also concerned by the absence of data about girls and boys with disabilities and of systematic information on measures and support available for starting independent life available to children with disabilities reaching adulthood. The Committee is also concerned by the absence of means for girls and boys to express their views on all matters that concern them. (para 15)
The Committee recommends that the State party take all the necessary steps to promote the realization of the rights of the child for girls and boys with disabilities on an equal basis with others, and provide adequate support for girls and boys with disabilities to help them start an independent life when they reach adulthood. The Committee recommends that the State party ensure safeguards to protect the right of girls and boys with disabilities to be consulted in all matters that concern them and to ensure that they receive appropriate assistance in this regard. (para 16)
Freedom from exploitation, violence and abuse (art. 16): The Committee is concerned about the lack of: [...] (c) Data on the protection of persons with disabilities, especially women and girls, from exploitation, violence and abuse. (para 31)
The Committee reiterates the recommendations by the Committee on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women (CEDAW/C/QAT/CO/1, para. 24) and recommends that the State party: (a) Establish a comprehensive domestic violence protection system, as envisaged in the National Development Strategy 2011-2016 and adopt specific legislation to criminalize all forms of violence against women and girls, mainstreaming the rights and needs of women and girls with disabilities therein, including through consulting with their representative organizations; (b) Develop policies for protection from violence, abuse and exploitation, mainstream the disability perspective within it and step up measures to protect persons with disabilities, especially women and girls, from exploitation, violence and abuse; (c) Guarantee the provision of accessible information and victim support services that are sufficient in number and location and accessible, in particular for women and girls with disabilities. (para 32)
Education (art. 24): The Committee is concerned that the State party has not taken sufficient steps to provide reasonable accommodation to all students with disabilities in mainstream schools as well as the absence of a strategy for quality inclusive education. It is also concerned that only students with certain kinds of impairments attend mainstream education while others are enrolled at separate and segregated facilities or are awaiting placement and not in the education system. The Committee is also concerned by the high rates of illiteracy among older adults with disabilities and the lack of opportunities to access vocational training and tertiary education. (para 43)
The Committee recommends that the State party adopt the necessary legal and other measures to ensure the right of all children with disabilities to compulsory and free primary quality inclusive education. It also recommends that the State party reorient resources from segregated educational settings towards quality inclusive education with the provision of reasonable accommodation and individual supports, accessible environments and curricula, for all students with disabilities in mainstream schools and mandatory in-service training of all teachers and all staff in education facilities on quality inclusive education. It also recommends that the State party ensure that the Supreme Education Council be responsible for coordinating the availability of appropriate life-long learning environments for persons with disabilities. (para 44)
UN Committee on Enforced Disappearance