Juveniles in a detention facility in Kandahar were provided with books and stationary items earlier this week, as one part of the multi-faceted support provided by the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan to government institutions.
The items included Pashto school textbooks and general knowledge books in English, aimed at supporting the efforts of the Juvenile Rehabilitation Centre (JRC) to educate the prisoners and train them in various vocations skills.
Juvenile prisoners are young offenders aged 18 or less. The Centre currently accommodates 48 juveniles, including two girls. Twenty of the youths are charged with serious crimes linked to targeted killings or possession of suicide vests. The majority of those held are juveniles serving court sentences while some are awaiting trial.
UNAMA’s Rule of Law Unit regularly provides JRC with technical support and legal advice on detention matters, including the rights of juveniles during the prosecution process. The Unit also coordinates with the police, courts, prosecution office and JRC on the rights of detainees to a defence lawyer and ensuring free and fair process during the trial.
During a meeting with JRC official on Monday, UNAMA’s Rule of Law Unit suggested provision of home detention facilities, which enables juvenile detainees to go home during the day and return to the Centre at night. The UN officials advocated that this would allow the parents to spend times with their children and play a role in their rehabilitation.