Violence Against Children in Egypt An unsafe world is a world with no future

This report is issue no. 53 of LCHR’s Economic & Social Rights series. The report monitors violations against children and analyses articles published in the Egyptian newspapers from July to December 2006.

The report shows that violence against children during that period has reached 271 cases, represented in 45 cases of sexual abuse against children in schools and at home (17 o them led to death), 21 cases of physical assault (7 of them led to death), 49 cases of domestic violence (33 of them led to death), 65 cases of health, social, educational and food negligence, 5 cases of violence against children at work, 14 cases of juvenile delinquency, 3 cases of official violence (2 of them led to death), 69 miscellaneous cases (51 of them led to death). Most of these cases were committed by unemployed and limited income people.

57 of these cases were published in July, 100 in August and September, 29 in October, 40 in November and 45 in December.

The report discusses violence against children worldwide, which led to the death and injury of millions of children, all because of the spread of disease, negligence, poverty and war, showing that the world’s future is endangered unless this violence is stopped.

The report shows that 6 cases of sexual abuse against children in schools, 36 rape cases and 3 cases among family members were reported.

The report also shows that physical violence against children is practiced for many reasons, such as revenge of the child’s family, kidnapping for ransom or to sell them to servant dealers, robbery … etc. 8 cases were reported for ransom and revenge, 7 murder cases, 4 robbery cases, 2 injury cases and one fighting case. 13 o the victims were girls and 9 were boys.

The report shows that domestic violence happens for various reasons, like doubt in behavior, involuntary urination, disobedience, crying so much, being an unlawful child, discipline, mental illness or being mistreated by the stepmother. Such violence is committed by murder, torture (beating, burning), drowning, kicking children out into the streets or selling them to servant dealers. 20 of these cases were committed by the mothers, 11 by fathers, 7 by stepmothers, 4 by stepfathers, 3 by brothers and sisters, 2 by cousins, and one by each of the grandfather, aunt, uncle and the aunt’s husband.

Concerning the negligence in children’s social care, they have included malnutrition at home or in orphanages, falling into open gutters, elevator accidents, accidental fire shots, drowning in swimming pools, falling off balconies … etc. These victims included 20 girls and 26 boys. As for the negligence in healthcare, it has led to the death of 6 cases and 7 cases of permanent disabilities. These victims included 8 girls and 6 boys. As for negligence in educational care, it has led to 5 injuries, one exam failure, 4 death cases, one burning, and one beating and humiliation. These victims included about 13 children. As for negligence in the right to food, there were 4 cases of poisoning (3 of them have led to death). These victims included over 69 children.

The report presents violent cases against working children by the work owners who beat, torture and mistreat children working for them, leading to the death, injury or drug addiction of these children.

Another part of the report discusses juvenile delinquency, talking about children who work in beggary, pick pocketing, drug dealing, theft … etc.

The report also discusses official violence against children, stating that most of the violators were policemen, security forces and educational employees.

Another part of the report presents miscellaneous accidents, like road accidents, explosion, drowning, being bit by animals, train accidents, suicide, death in burning or collapsing houses, electrical shocks, using dangerous pesticides, accidental fire shots … etc. the victims of these accidents included around 60 girls and 70 boys.

At the end, the report presents some results, like the increase of violence rates against children in the second half of 2006 that witnessed 271 cases, leading to the death of 146 children, to be more than the first half that has witnessed 223 cases, leading to the death of 140 children. Cairo has witnessed more than half these cases.

This part also presents some recommendations to help support children’s rights and stop violence against them, like:

• Mobilizing the public opinion to criminalize all forms of violence and mistreatment practiced against children.

• Amending laws to support children’s rights.

• Improving the capabilities of the teachers, parents, policemen, social workers, judges and everyone dealing with children. And also develop the educational process.

• Improving citizens’ economic, social and civil conditions to stop the increase of the phenomenon.

• Raising the awareness of children about their rights and duties, and how to protect themselves from any form of violence, by for instance reporting such violations, and providing them with the suitable mechanisms to do so.

• Making strict punishments to these who commit such violations.

The LCHR hopes that all CSOs implement the report recommendations to improve children’s conditions and stop violence against them.

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The Muslim Brotherhood’s Program
Ikhwanweb – Cairo, Egypt