Seyaj’s Monitoring and Protection Center

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Introduction:

Seyaj’s Monitoring and Protection Center is the first of its kind  in Yemen which was established in 2008 to monitor violations and crimes committed against children, and provide them with protection and advocacy.

 Our excellent partnership with UNICEF as well as the fund provided to Seyaj by the EU mission to Yemen-since 2009  made a quantum leap in enhancing the center’s ability to  meet the standards of UNICEF in monitoring, documentation, and judicial and media advocacy.

 In 2012, the center was developed into a specialized center which includes several sections (Monitoring and documentation, judicial assistance, legal assistance, advocacy, research and studies and information network).

 The center has  well-qualified a staff and volunteers in our headquarters. Over the past five years, more than 800 persons from all the Yemeni governorates, mostly lawyers, journalists, health workers, teachers, judges, religious and tribal leader, etc. were trained.

Areas of focus

Seyaj’s Monitoring and Protection Center operates to monitor and document crimes committed against children on a daily basis across Yemen under a special electronic system which was established and developed by Seyaj and UNICEF.

Preventive protection:

to create an environment which protects children from violence, deprivation, mistreatment, Seyaj’s plan for the period from 2015 to 2020 has focused on preventive protection through contributing in reviewing and developing national legislations and developing abilities of its staff to apply them; enhancement of local and national protection mechanisms; networking and integration with different state, non-state and international authorities.

Subsequent protection:

Seyaj operates to provide subsequent protection and legal consultations. It notifies relevant authorities regarding unaccompanied children, and implement advocacy campaigns according to Seyaj’s protection polices, code of conduct and ethical principles.

Implementation and publication of researches, studies, questionnaires and specialized reports through the research section in collaboration with a number of universities, research centers, researchers and experts inside and outside Yemen.

 The information system consists of :

  • ledger system

The center uses registers which include all required information to gather and analyze data about violence against children deliberately.

 Automated System:

The center uses an automated data system in early of February 2011 in order to store, and archive data, information and documents about violence committed against children, services provided to children, publication of special reports, evaluation of performance and efficiency. Due to the increase of data size, the automated data system was set up in 2013 with the support of MEPI and UNICEF.

 Many researchers take advantage of the center’s information and data about violence committed against children in Yemen. Academics, civil society organizations, media outlets and students uses the center’s statistics, indicators and specialized reports on various kinds of violence committed against children.

 The most important services of the center:

The center monitors violence against children with the aim of providing services to children and their families through the following:

1-    Monitoring and documenting crimes and violations.

2-    Providing judicial assistance to child victims and their families.

3-    . Providing advocacy for child  victims and their families to guarantee not losing their rights through contacting state authorities at different levels, national and international organizations and media outlets.

4-     Preparation and release of annual reports about violation and violence against children.

5-     Production and release of specialized reports on some problems and negative phenomena such as child conditions in armed conflicts, early marriage of girls, female genital mutilation, dropout of education and etc.

6-     Preparation and release of studies and scientific researches on depriving children from their basic rights, and referring child victims to shelters and  socio-psychological centers through networking and cooperation with state and non-state institutions which provide services to children.

 The center also monitor and document grave violations during normal situation and emergencies such as armed conflicts and violence caused by security and political instability  as the following:

 First: In normal conditions:

The following crimes are monitored and documented:

  1. Killing.
  2. Physical injuries

3. Different sorts of violence and sexual exploitation such as rape, harassment, exploitation in pornography and early marriage of girls

4. psychological and physical torture

5. Unlawful restriction of liberty or imprisonment

6. Child trafficking

  1. 7.  Trafficking of human organs

8. Exploiting children in drug trafficking

9. Child recruitment and exploitation in armed conflicts

10. Execution of juveniles

 Second: During emergency

The center monitors the grave six violations which the UN Security Council’s resolution 1612 of 2005 and resolution 1883 of 2009 provide:

1-    Killing and maiming of children

2-    Recruitment or use of children as soldiers

3-    Sexual violence against children

4-    Attacks against schools or hospitals

5-    Denial of humanitarian access for children

6-    Abduction of children.

 Beneficiaries of the center’s services

The center provides psychological and legal, media support and social advocacy for child victims given the following:

1-    The victims should not be older than 18 years

2-    If the crimes are committed by one person or more, or an authority or more: whether the violence is committed directly or indirectly.

3-    If the crime is committed on the Yemeni land: regardless of six, color, nationality, religion or belief of the victim.

4-    If the victim is a Yemen national residing in a foreign country.

5-    If a guardian of a child victim provides a legal authorization to Seyaj.

6-    Seyaj’s officers verify if the victim or his family are in need to support. They apply Seyaj’s methods for verification.

 Successes achieved by the center:             

Seyaj’s Monitoring and Protection Center managed to achieve unique successes in protecting and advocating child rights. It directly contributed in highlighting violations committed against children locally and internationally. Here are some of those cases which Seyaj shed light on them.

  1. Since 2099, Seyaj has become a major organization in providing information and advocating child rights with UNICEF and a number of national and international organizations. Reports of Seyaj’s monitoring center have become an essential reference for the United Nations, particularly the information regarding armed disputes, as the UN Secretary-General mentioned on his 2009 report.
  2. Exploiting children in trafficking human organs: this was first revealed by Seyaj in 2009.
  3. Yemen’s acknowledge of recruiting children and using them in wars and armed disputes: President Abdo Rabu Mansour Hadi issued on November 27, 2012 a decree of banning recruitment of children as soldiers, and demobilization of all child soldiers. The commander of the First Armored Division  Ali Mohsin al-Ahmar also issued a decree of demobilizing 100 soldiers, and expressed his readiness to demobilize all those who were underage. He also agreed to carry out visits to army camps for raising awareness.  The Yemeni government also signed in late 2012 on the Paris Principles. This came after Seyaj carried out campaigns against recruitment children as soldiers. These campaigns were funded by the German Embassy to Yemen.
  4. Early marriage of girls: Dozens of early marriage of girls cases  (Nojood al-Ahdal , Ruhmanah al-Shaif, Aishah Moqrbash and others) were stopped as Seyaj intervened.
  5. Execution of juveniles: Seyaj highlighted this problem and could stop the execution of a number of juveniles before days, and sometimes before hours of executing them. Mohammed Samoom and Walid Haikel were examples of those children who their execution were stopped. Seyaj has lately offered the Justice Ministry and the Supreme Judicial Council a list including 50 names of children who would be executed.

 Notice:

The center does not provide services for victims of natural disasters  epidemics and traffic accidents. It only provides its serves in these cases if there is negligence leading to double negative consequences on child victims. In this case, the center can intervene to provide advocacy and media support.

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