Convention on the Rights of the Child

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United Nations

CRC/C/YEM/4



Convention on the
Rights of the Child


Distr.: General

23 October 2012

English

Original: Arabic


Committee on the Rights of the Child

Consideration of reports submitted by States parties under article 44 of the Convention

Fourth periodic report of States parties due in 2008

Yemen

[21 October 2010]

Contents

Paragraphs Page

I. Introduction 1–9 7

A. The reporting mechanism 4–11 7

B. Follow-up of the implementation of the Committee’s recommendations


with respect to the third periodic report 12–19 9

II. General measures of implementation 20–51 10

A. Legislative measures 20–22 10

B. National plans and strategies 23 10

C. Structures 24–25 11

D. Independent monitoring institutions 26–33 12

E. Cooperation with civil society organizations 34–35 13

F. Cooperation with donor institutions 36–39 14

G. Budgets for children 40–43 14

H. Data systems and databases 44–49 15

I. Dissemination of the Convention 50 16

J. Training 51 17

III. Definition of the child 52–65 17

IV. General principles 66–84 20

A. The principle of non-discrimination 66–71 20

B. The right to life, survival and development 72–77 21

C. Best interests of the child 78–80 22

D. Respect for the views of the child 78–80 23

V. Civil rights and freedoms 80–131 24

A. Name and nationality 85–107 24

B. Preservation of identity 108 29

C. Freedom of expression 109–110 29

D. Freedom of association and of peaceful assembly 111–112 29

E. Protection of privacy 113–117 30

F. Access to appropriate information 118–126 31

G. The right not to be subjected to torture and other cruel, inhuman or


degrading treatment 127–131 33

VI. Family environment and alternative care 132–169 35

A. Parental guidance 132–134 35

B. Parental responsibilities 135–136 36

C. Separation from parents 137–138 36

D. Family reunification 139 37

E. Recovery of maintenance for the child 139 37

F. Children deprived of a family environment 140–149 37

G. Family foster care (kafalah) for orphans 150 38

H. Transfer of children abroad 151 39

I. Ill-treatment and neglect 152–169 39

VII. Basic health and welfare 170–307 43

A. Children with disabilities 170–219 43

B. Health and health services 220–282 51

C. Social security and an adequate standard of living 283–307 63

VIII. Education, leisure and cultural activities 308–399 67

A. Education 308–393 67

B. Leisure, recreation and cultural activities 394–399 89

IX. Special protection measures 400–538 94

A. Children in situations of emergency 400–428 94

B. Children in armed conflicts (art. 38), including physical and
psychological recovery and social reintegration (art. 39) 429–463 99

C. Children in conflict with the law 464–495 105

D. Children in situations of exploitation, including physical and
psychological recovery and social reintegration 496–538 111

Tables


1. Number of civil society organizations working on children’s issues 123

2. Statistics on types and numbers of NGOs working on children’s issues 123

3. Total pledges made during, before and after the donor conference ($ millions) 124

4. Total allocations to sectors by State and international donor institution 126

5. Public spending, 2000–2005 (percentage of GDP) 127

6. Percentage of components of the functional distribution of public spending to


GDP, 2000–2005 127

7. Allocations for 2008 by sector and funding source 128

8. Birth registration figures from the Department of Civil Status, 2003–2008 129

9. Special programmes on family and children’s issues and air time devoted to them 130

10. Themes covered by media programmes aimed at families and children 131

11. Types of radio and television programmes and their mission objectives 132

12. Total number of broadcasting hours for children’s radio and television programmes 133

13. Number of Channel One broadcasting hours, 2003–2006 133

14. Issues covered by radio and television stations 134

15. Air time devoted to family and children’s programmes on local radio and


television channels 135

16. Number of government orphanages in the Republic of Yemen 136

17. Orphan homes in the the Republic of Yemen run jointly by the Government
and NGOs or by NGOs only 137

18. Number of users of the services of the Social Welfare Fund as at the end of 2007 140

19. Number of users among children with disabilities by service provided according to
the statistics of the General Department for Community-based Rehabilitation (CBR)
for 2007 140

20. Number of persons with disabilities in the governorate, 2007 140

21. Number of persons who benefited from CBR during 2007 141

22. CBR programmes for persons with disabilities 141

23. Number of children at the Early Intervention Centre 141

24. Number of males and female in the Education Section 142

25. Users of services from centres for the blind during 2007 142

26. Family planning methods distributed to all governorates during the period 2005–2007 142

27. Comparison of family planning methods used during the period 2006–2008 142

28. Number of persons living with AIDS by gender in the Republic of Yemen 143

29. Groups targeted by AIDS awareness during the first half of 2006 at the central

and governorate levels 143

30. Persons targeted by AIDS and STI training 144

31. Overall poverty incidence during the period 2007–2010 144

32. Service and development projects implemented by the Ministry of Social Affairs
and Labour during 2007 144

33. Status of microfinance programmes as at the end of December 2007 145

34. Indicators for phase II of the Integrated Intervention Programme 146

35. Number of kindergartens in school years 2001/02–2008/09 by oversight body


(governmental – NGO/private) 147

36. Number of kindergarten teachers in school years 2001/02–2008/09 147

37. Number of kindergarten pupils in school years 2001/02–2008/09 147

38. Number, type and academic level of pilot schools for gifted and high-achieving


pupils and target governorates 148

39. Number of students in the 10–20 age group enrolled in alphabetic literacy centres


in school years 2001/02–2007/08 148

40. Growth in numbers of literacy centre personnel during school years 2001/02–2007/08 148

41. Girls’ education training courses and workshops delivered in 2007 149

42. Growth of girls’ enrolment in basic and secondary education during school years


2001/02–2008/09 149

43. Comparison of basic education enrolment rates for males and females in school


years 2001/02 and 2008/09 149

44. Total admissions for all ages to basic grade 1 during school years 2001/02–2007/08,


percentage of females to males and the gender gap 149

45. Items of educational equipment, educational supplies and learning resources


distributed to schools in years 2003/04–2008/09 152

46. Number of trainers and military personnel in the school workforce by gender


and training programme for years 2001/02–2008/09 151

47. Public education expenditure compared with general public expenditure and GDP

for the period 2003–2007 (YRI millions) 154

48. Total annual posts allocated to units of the State’s administrative apparatus and


percentage allocated to public education during years 2003–2007 154

49. Proportion of enrolment in technical education (two years + three years) to


enrolment in university education 154

50. Number of students enrolled in and graduated from intermediate institutes for


years 2002/03–2006/07 154

51. Breakdown of technical education and vocational training expenditure during the


period 2003–2007 (YRI millions) 155

52. Growth in number of mainstream schools by level and type during school


years 2001/02–2008/09 155

53. Growth in number of mainstream schools by level and supervisory authority


(governmental – NGO/private) during school years 2001/02–2008/09 156

54. Growth in number of classroom teachers in mainstream schools by level of


school and gender during school years 2001/02–2008/09 157

55. Growth in number of pupils in mainstream schools by level of school and gender


during school years 2001/02–2008/09 157

56. Growth in kindergarten enrolment rates by child gender, and teacher-to-child ratio


and average class density during school years 2001/02–2008/09 158

57. Growth in number of administrative personnel in mainstream schools by gender


and level of school during school years 2001/02–2007/08 158

58. Growth in number of administrative personnel in kindergartens by gender during


school years 2001/02–2007/08 159

59. Sports activities performed during the period 2001–2007 by type of activity and gender 159

60. Participation in sports events abroad and rankings achieved by Yemen during the
period 2001/02–2007/08 160

61. Number of parks and leisure areas country-wide 160

62. Number of refugee children attending educational and vocational training facilities
in camps and in neighbouring areas and villages in Lahij and Aden governorates
during the 2007 school year 161

63. Health services provided to refugees 161

64. Training courses implemented for persons working with children affected by
armed conflict 162

65. (a) Cases heard by juvenile courts in some of the country’s governorates


(San`a City, Aden, Ibb and Ta`izz) 165

(b) Cases heard by juvenile courts in some of the country’s governorates


(Hajjah, Abyan and Hadramawt) 165

66. Juvenile court statistics, 2004–2007 165

67. (a) Number of juveniles in social guidance homes and types of delinquency, 2003 167

(b) Number of juveniles in social guidance homes and types of delinquency, 2004 168

(c) Number of juveniles in social guidance homes and types of delinquency, 2005 169

(d) Number of juveniles in social guidance homes and types of delinquency, 2006 170

(e) Number of juveniles in social guidance homes and types of delinquency, 2007 171

(f) Number of juveniles in social guidance homes and types of delinquency, 2008 172

68. Number of imprisoned children, 2003–2008 173

69. Number of children living with their mothers in prison, 2003–2008 173

70. Number of social guidance homes for juveniles 174

71. Social groups targeted by the programme (2006–2007), including child workers,


their siblings and their families, employers, civil society organizations and schoolchildren, and partnership activities of the Child Labour Unit at the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour and rehabilitation centres for child workers in San`a City, Aden and Seiyun 175

72. Number of users of safe childhood centres (street children) in the governorates 178

73. Number of deported children and interceptions of children being smuggled 178

I. Introduction

1. The Constitution of the Republic of Yemen enshrines the principles of democracy and political pluralism and the State takes a positive approach to new human rights concepts in general and to children’s right in particular, given that children are a part of the present and every part of the future. Believing that to be so, the Republic of Yemen acceded to the first Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of the Child on the involvement of children in armed conflict, by Act No. 19 of 24 August 2004, and to the second Optional Protocol thereto on the sale of children, child prostitution and child pornography, by Act No. 20 of 24 August 2004.

2. A comprehensive review was carried out to ensure that the domestic legislation is substantially reflected in national strategies and plans in order to serve the best interests of the child. The resulting draft amendments are essentially intended to address the inconsistency in national legislation concerning the definition of a child; provide legal protection for children, especially those living in difficult circumstances; deal with issues relating to the protection of children from sexual and economic exploitation and to, inter alia, child smuggling, early marriage, child labour and juvenile rights; introduce stricter penalties for all categories of offenders against children and violators of children’s rights; and promote harmonization of national legislation with international conventions in a manner that is in keeping with the teachings of Islam.

3. The present fourth report was prepared on the basis of the recommendations contained in the concluding observations of the Committee of the Rights of the Child on the third periodic report concerning the situation of children in Yemen, which was submitted to the Committee and considered in June 2005. This is an indication of the commitment of Yemen to the Convention and international instruments.



A. The reporting mechanism

4. The accumulated expertise of the Yemeni Government in periodic reporting was a key point of reference in the process of preparing the fourth periodic report. In that regard, the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood took the necessary measures in line with a participatory approach aimed at ensuring the engagement of all stakeholders in the different stages of preparation outlined below.



Stage I: Preparation and information-gathering

5. Designated pursuant to a decision of the Minister of Social Affairs and Labour, vice-chairperson of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, the entities involved in gathering information from governmental bodies and civil society organizations included the following: the Ministry of Public Health and Population; the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour; the Ministry of Human Rights; the Ministry of Justice; the Ministry of Education; the Ministry of Awqaf; the Ministry of Finance; the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation; the Ministry of the Interior; the Ministry of Culture; the Ministry of Tourism; the Ministry of Information; the Ministry of Legal Affairs; the Ministry of Water and Environment; the Ministry of Higher Education; the Ministry of Technical and Vocational Education; the House of Representatives; the Shura Council; the Office of the Public Prosecutor; the Reform Association; the Yemen Women’s Union; the Coordinating Authority for Child Rights Non-governmental Organizations (NGOs); the Women’s National Committee; the Saleh Foundation for Social Development; the Human Rights Information and Training Centre; the Yemeni Observatory for Human Rights; the Youth Advisory Council; and the Technical Secretariat of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood.

6. Difficulties were encountered in the information-gathering process; in particular, modern information systems were unavailable in most of the bodies concerned, meaning that the time allocated to this stage was protracted. The Democracy School – an NGO – was also unable to take up the invitation extended to it to participate in this stage, as it represents the Secretariat-General of the Children’s Parliament and will be preparing a shadow report.

Stage II: Initial drafting of the report

7. A drafting committee of national experts was formed to work under the direct supervision of the Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood. The committee based its activities on the guidelines for periodic reporting and the Committee’s concluding observations on the third periodic report.



Stage III: Review

8. The review process was conducted in two phases:

(1) The initial draft of the report was presented and discussed at a national workshop attended by some 70 participants from relevant governmental entities, civil society organizations and donor agencies, as well as by representatives of the Children’s Parliament and stakeholders from some of the main governorates;

(2) The final draft and the report on the outputs from the workshop were presented to a review committee chaired by the Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, with a membership consisting of the Minister of State for Social Affairs and Labour (Development Sector), the Assistant Secretary-General of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, the Director of the Periodic Reports Department at the Ministry of Human Rights, and the human rights officer at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.



Stage IV: Approval

9. The final draft of the report was presented to the Technical Committee for Human Rights, which comprises representatives of various governmental stakeholders: the Presidency of the Republic; the Office of the Prime Minister; the Ministry of the Interior; the Ministry of Justice; the Ministry of Legal Affairs; the Ministry of Social Affairs and Labour; the Office of the Public Prosecutor; the Ministry of Information; the Political Security Agency; the Ministry of Human Rights; and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs. The report was also transmitted to the Cabinet and the Presidency of the Republic for consideration and approval. Following its approval at a meeting of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, it was formally transmitted to the Committee on the Rights of the Child through the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

10. The transmission of the report was delayed on account of several factors, in particular:


  • The difficulty of obtaining information and reports from stakeholders;

  • The substandard quality of the information and its lack of compliance with the guideline requirements, which led to more work for the drafting and review committees in terms of re-examining the information and checking key sources.

11. We wish here to thank profusely the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and Save the Children for the support which they provided for the successful completion of the reporting process.

B. Follow-up of the implementation of the Committee’s recommendations with respect to the third periodic report

12. In accordance with the recommendations made by the Committee in June 2005, the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood, working in coordination with Save the Children Sweden, held a series of consultations with representatives of ministries, governmental institutions, the Yemeni Coordinating Authority for Child Rights NGOs and international organizations (UNICEF and Save the Children Sweden) in order to follow up implementation of the recommendations and observations relating to periodic reports.

13. The recommendations and concluding observations were made widely available to government ministries and stakeholder institutions. They were also transmitted to the governorates and NGOs through official communications to which a copy of the observations was annexed so that they could be reflected in the yearly work plans.

14. The third periodic report was printed in a book containing the Committee’s observations and recommendations, which was circulated and disseminated nationally and in activities implemented at the centralized and decentralized levels.

15. A national workshop was held in September 2005 with the aim of enlisting the help of participants in defining the role of the entities concerned with implementing the concluding observations and recommendations.

16. A working group of the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood and ministerial representatives was formed to monitor implementation of the plan and it held a number of meetings to follow up on the efforts of child-related institutions.

17. A report on recommendations implemented in connection with the Convention on the Rights of the Child was compiled in 2006 from the reports of ministries and governmental institutions on that subject. This endeavour was the fruit of the partnership between the Supreme Council for Motherhood and Childhood and Save the Children Sweden in implementing a project called “Together for follow-up of the implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child”. The project comprises a set of components and activities designed to strengthen the role of the Supreme Council in following up, together with other stakeholder institutions, the implementation of the Convention by the Yemeni Government.

18. Civil society organizations joined in briefing stakeholders about the Committee’s recommendations through workshops and meetings, and the Children’s Parliament played its part in following up implementation of the Committee’s recommendations by devoting one of its sessions to a discussion with officials about the Government’s efforts on that score and about our country’s level of implementation of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

19. In the following parts of this report, we will examine the legislative, executive, administrative and judicial measures taken at the national level to implement the Convention in general and those taken with respect to the Committee’s concluding observations and recommendations.

II. General measures of implementation

A. Legislative measures

20. In order to strengthen the status of the Convention in national laws, and given the importance of harmonizing domestic legislation with the Convention, the Yemeni Government profited from the Committee’s recommendations concerning the reports submitted in 2000, 2003 and 2006 to undertake a comprehensive review of a number of national laws, in particular:

(1) The Children’s Act No. 45 of 2002;

(2) The Juvenile Welfare Act No. 24 of 1992;

(3) The Military Penal Code No. 21 of 1998;

(4) The Penal Code No. 12 of 1994;

(5) The Personal Status Act No. 20 of 1992;

(6) The Prisons Regulation Act No. 48 of 1991.

21. A committee of legal experts from governmental bodies and NGOs was formed and the services of two experts, one national and one international, were engaged. An advisory meeting was organized with stakeholders from all governorates in order to expand the circle of participation. After a discussion of the national legislation, draft amendments1 were submitted to the Cabinet, which debated and approved them at its meeting held on 5 December 2006 and submitted them to the House of Representatives. The amendments focused on a number of key issues of relevance to children’s rights, including:


  • The legislative inconsistency concerning the definition of a child;

  • Issues relating to the protection of children from violence and exploitation, the suppression of female genital mutilation (FGM), early marriage, child labour and juvenile rights;

  • The introduction of stricter penalties for offenders against children and violators of children’s rights;

  • The harmonization of national legislation with the international conventions ratified by the Republic of Yemen.

22. The Government also presented to the House of Representatives a number of bills relating to children’s issues, in particular the Public Health Bill, the Safe Maternity Bill and the Labour Bill, all of which were referred to the competent committees of the House of Representatives for consideration and review.



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