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In addition to the widespread use of treason charges against those suspected of collaborating with the rebel movements active in Uganda, the NRM government has frequently used treason charges to detain a wide range of actual or perceived opponents of the NRM, even though conviction on treason charges carries a mandatory death sentence. Under the Ugandan Constitution, a person charged with treason or similar offenses which are only triable by the High Court must be released on bail "on such conditions as the court considers reasonable" if they have been on remand for 360 days. However, in some cases persons remain incarcerated on remand for periods as long as five years, in clear violation of their constitutional and international human rights.72

In other treason cases where the remand period has ended and treason suspects were released on the order of a court, police have circumvented the law by rearresting the suspects and bringing new treason charges based on the same information. This happened in May 1998, when eighteen suspected members of the West Nile Bank Front (WNBF) rebel groups were rearrested on the same treason charges immediately after a court ordered their release because they had served more than 360 days (the maximum period allowed) awaiting trial on remand.73 Twenty-seven ADF suspects who were freed on bond in May 1998 because they had spent more than one year in prison on remand were similarly rearrested.74

In an interview with Human Rights Watch just days after the release and rearrest of the WNBF suspects, Major General Salim Saleh expressed his strong disagreement with the release of the WNBF suspects, claiming that the released suspects had been selected out from a larger group of WNBF captives "because they cannot be reformed," and suggesting that the released rebel suspects would flee. The major-general further justified continued detention by arguing that thegovernment was at least respecting the WNBF suspects' right to life: "As long as they are alive, it is a better situation. They will get out eventually."75

Law Professor Jjuuko of Makerere University placed the use of treason charges in a larger history of detention without trial in Uganda:

The government right from 1986 has used treason charges in unprecedented numbers. At first, many of the cases were against Buganda monarchists and other dissidents. Now it is almost all people from the North and the West Nile region. Some are peasants, others are political dissidents. The treason charges arose out of pressure from human rights groups objecting to the long-term detention of persons at military barracks, a practice known as "lodging." In 1987 and 1988, the constitution was amended to allow the president to declare a state of emergency, and to allow for special military courts in those areas under a state of emergency. When this didn't work, they resorted to treason charges, basically using them as holding charges. In other countries, treason is only used in the context of war but in Uganda the charge has been almost routine. But in most cases they will not prosecute them, they are holding charges because bail can only be granted after one year. This makes the right to a speedy trial meaningless.76

Torture, Coerced Confessions, and Treason Charges

In April 1998, Human Rights Watch investigated the cases of a group of incarcerated treason suspects accused of involvement in the ADF rebellion in Western Uganda, conducting interviews with many of the suspects, the police officer in charge of the investigations, the magistrate monitoring the cases, local community leaders, and prison officials. The evidence gathered paints a disturbing picture. At the time of our visit to the regional Mubuku prison work farm, there were sixty-four persons on remand on treason charges, and four persons on remand for the lesser charge of misprision or concealment of treason.77

Most of the suspects were arrested by either the army or by internal security officers (known as DISO, district internal security officers). Several suspects claimed they were tortured at the army barracks at Kabukero where soldiers put sticks between their fingers, tied their hands together and then beat down on their hands with stones.78 A number of the suspects claimed that they had been tied to a tree and had been brutally beaten by soldiers with a heavy cane, and showed Human Rights Watch the deep cuts on their buttocks which they said were the result of the beatings.79 One of the suspects told Human Rights Watch that he witnessed soldiers torturing another suspect by burning a jerry can and dripping the burning plastic on his exposed skin.80 The purpose of the torture was apparently to extract evidence which was then used to arrest other suspects and repeat the same procedures:

They beat me for about ten minutes on the hands, and then I had to accept that I knew something about the rebels. If they asked you who you were collaborating with, you must just say any name of a person you can think of. I had to identify three people. There were two boys who had been detained by the army for long, and they told us that if we did not cooperate we would die. We had no choice. The two boys gave the same names which I should mention [to the interrogators].81

After reportedly forcing the suspects to identify other suspects and make confessions through torture, the army brought the suspects to the police. Because confessions extracted by the army are not admissible as evidence, the army officers took the suspects to a location outside the barracks, where the detainees said they were met by police officers and forced to sign admissions while surrounded byarmy soldiers.82 These admissions, in some cases dictated by the military, are the basis for their continued incarceration on treason charges.

The police, who are supposed to investigate and charge suspects, seemed intimidated by the army and barely carried out investigations, claiming it was impossible to reach the areas and gather witnesses. Police officials freely admitted to Human Rights Watch that they were operating in an "arrest now, investigate later" mode. In fact, it appeared that even after arrest no substantial investigations were taking place. Moses Otwili, the chief investigations officer (CID) for the Kasese District, told Human Rights Watch that it is possible that many of the suspects were innocent: "You may find that some people are innocent but we cannot release them. Otherwise the soldiers will think we are collaborators."83 Otwili continued:

We just charged some people from Kichwamba with treason. Some may be innocent, but there is no time to gather evidence of their innocence. You can get arrested for nothing and there is nothing that you can do about it. We feel sorry for them, but it is like catching a stray bullet in a war zone.84

One of the suspects was crying when he told Human Rights Watch of the suffering of his wife and ten children since they were deprived of their only breadwinner. Another suspect told Human Rights Watch that he was responsible for a total of nineteen children since the death of his brother, and that five of these children and his brother's wife had died from hunger and disease since his incarceration.85

As in western Uganda, the UPDF frequently arrests people in the north on suspicion of being rebels, detaining them illegally at their barracks before turning them over to the police without any information:

The arresting soldiers tended to leave [the police station] without recording statements or leaving their contact address. Such people then remained in detention at the police station. Although they did not admitit, the police appeared to keep the suspects in detention in fear of annoying the UPDF. They could not take the detainees to court because they had no facts on which to base a charge.86

The investigation of one series of treason cases strongly supports the view that treason charges are being used in Uganda as a "holding charge," effectively neutralizing political opponents, dissidents, and other suspected persons on the flimsiest of charges. James Otto, secretary-general of Gulu-based Human Rights Focus, told Human Rights Watch that "treason charges are used as a holding charge, in the same way that Obote used detention orders."87 In the words of an earlier Amnesty International report, "the charge of treason...has been used to hold suspected opponents despite the absence of sufficient evidence on which to base a prosecution, let alone a conviction."88 The number of persons on remand for treason in Uganda as of September 1998 exceeds 1,000. Some of the cases involve a large number of suspects: 114 people have remained on remand for treason at Luzira prison following a UPDF raid on a Tabliq rebel training camp near Buseruka, Hoima district, in August 1995. In December 1998, more than 600 treason suspects detained at Luzira prison, most of them arrested in the West Nile region during 1997, wrote to President Museveni to request a presidential pardon. The group claimed that out of their original group of 650 suspects, fifty-two had died between January and April 1998 at Luzira prison from various ailments.89 Unconscionably long remand times are not only a feature of treason charges, but characterize almost all serious charges in Uganda, pointing to serious deficiencies in the administration of justice. For example, the Uganda Human Rights Commission has documented the case of Frenjo Olima, who was arrested in Arua on a murder charge in 1984. He was acquitted in 1991 on the charge, but was sent back to prison by the state attorney. The HRC found that he was still in detention in 1997: "Neither he nor the prison authorities knew why he was there."90

Abuse of Treason Charges as a Method of Political Control

The almost unchecked power of the UPDF to arrest and incarcerate civilians has created a climate of political repression. Especially in the rural areas destabilized by rebel conflicts, persons are fearful to express and advocate political beliefs at odds with the NRM out of fear of being identified as rebel sympathizers. Cecilia Ogwal told Human Rights Watch, "Treason charges are normally used in areas of insurgency. They pick key activists from among the multipartyists or people opposed to the government and frame them as collaborators with the rebels."91 Wycliffe Birungi, chairperson of the human rights committee of the Uganda Law Society, shared a similar view with Human Rights Watch:

Offenses such as treason are normally used by the state to stifle dissent or opposition, especially against political opponents. Some of these political opponents are nonviolent, but there are also many who are captured in the rebel zones and charged with terrorism.... In almost all of these cases, the persons are innocent, but it is an effective way of suppressing any likely opposition. In most cases, the police doesn't even carry out investigations before it arrests these people. In an area like Arua, given there has been instability, I am of the opinion that the government does this to pacify and intimidate the population and to scare off opposition.92

A number of prominent politicians have been charged with treason since the NRM came to power. In May 1992, Zachary Olum, the organizing secretary of the DP, Ojok Mulozi, the publicity secretary of the DP, and Tiberio Atwoma Okeny, chairman of the National Liberal Party, were acquitted of treason after the judge concluded that the "whole trial was politically motivated."93 The case had originally involved eighteen prominent leaders from the north arrested in March and April 1991, including the minister of state for foreign affairs, Daniel Omara Atubo, and cases were either dismissed or resulted in acquittal. In January 1992, Robert Kitariko, secretary-general of the DP, and Ojok Mulozi, publicity secretary of the DP, and others were charged with treason in a related case. Their case wasdismissed in March 1992, and Kitariko is currently a member of the Electoral Commission.

Brigadier Moses Ali, a former Uganda National Rescue Front (UNRF) leader and at the time the minister of youth, culture and sport in Museveni's government, was arrested in April 1990 on treason charges. He remained incarcerated for twenty-six months until his acquittal in June 1992, with the judge commenting that the prosecution evidence was "unreliable and worthless."94 Moses Ali is currently second deputy prime minister and minister of tourism, trade and industry. In March 1994, two UPC leaders were arrested and charged with sedition for publishing a revised party manifesto which claimed that Uganda was ruled by Tutsis.95

Joseph Lusse, a prominent Kampala business man and staunch DP supporter, has been repeatedly charged with treason, first in 1988 and again in 1995. On October 30, 1998, Lusse and his six co-defendants were acquitted by High Court Justice Patrick Tabaro, who stated that there was no evidence to support the treason charges. However, Lusse was rearrested immediately after his acquittal, and has again been remanded to prison on the basis of identical treason charges. During a recent court appearance, Lusse reportedly told the presiding justice that he had been tortured while in custody, and removed some of his clothes to show the scars he claimed were caused by torture.96

Although the use of treason charges against prominent politicians has diminished in recent years, the overbroad use of treason charges affects the ability and willingness of local activists, especially in rebel areas, to criticize the government.

In March 1998, nine northerners were arrested around Gulu and later charged with treason by Major Kakooza-Mutale, a presidential advisor on political affairs. The arrests were strongly criticized by Northern politicians, including the Acholi parliamentary group, the Gulu RDC, and the Minister of State Resident in the North as an unconstitutional exercise of power.97 One of the persons arrested was Okello Layoo, the just-elected chairperson of the LC III council for Anaka subcounty in Nwoya county. The frequent resort to treason charges and lengthyincarcerations, when viewed together with the army's outspoken support for the NRM, makes for a repressive and chilling climate.

Use of Treason Charges Against Children

Treason charges are not only applied to silence political opponents and dissidents, they are also used against those suspected of collaboration with the rebel movements, including children. Children-defined internationally as those under the age of eighteen-have been charged with treason because of their alleged involvement with rebel groups in the north and west of Uganda. These groups, most notably the LRA, ADF, and WNBF, have engaged in frequent abductions of children, often forcing them to join their ranks as combatants. Used as pawns in a conflict that has little to do with them, the children may now find themselves facing the most serious of criminal charges. Children charged with treason have been detained for long periods of time, confined with adults in army barracks or police cells, and subject to torture and abuse.

Although Ugandan law considers treason to be a capital offense, the death penalty may not be imposed upon those below the age of eighteen at the time of the offense.98 Children who are accused of capital crimes may be held no longer than six months on remand.99 If a child's case is not completed one year after he or she is formally charged, it must be dismissed and the child absolved of any future liability for the alleged offense.100

Although codified in Ugandan law, in practice these juvenile justice standards are frequently ignored. According to the Ugandan Children's Statute, the cases of children accused of capital crimes must be heard by the High Court rather than by the investigative, child-focused Family and Children Court. The law mandates that the High Court, when hearing juvenile cases, "shall have due regard to the child's age and to the provisions of the law relating to the procedures for trials involving children."101 Unfortunately, implementation of this provision has been frustrated by limited resources and by the reluctance of many officials to accord special treatment to children accused of serious crimes.102

Due to poor record keeping within Uganda's juvenile justice system, it is difficult to confirm the number of children detained for treason. In January 1998,the Ugandan Human Rights Commission found that twenty-five children were held at Naguru Remand Home on charges of treason. Seventeen had been arrested in the West Nile Region and accused of fighting with the WNBF against the Ugandan government. Eight were arrested in Kasese and were accused of collaborating with ADF rebels.103 Confidential sources claim that most of these children have been released, but several continue to be held on treason charges while other children have since been arrested on similar charges. The Foundation for Human Rights Initiative established that forty children were being held on treason charges in Jinja prison during a September, 1998, visit to the facility. The children were brought to Jinja prison from Arua (West Nile) in May 1997, where they were allegedly involved in WNBF rebel activities. Some of the cases were committed to the High Court in June 1998.104 The outcome of the cases and the whereabouts of the other children is unknown to Human Rights Watch. They were between ten and sixteen years old at the time of their arrival at Jinja prison. It is likely that other children are being detained at different prisons, as well as at military facilities.

Many children who have surrendered or escaped from rebel forces have been detained in army barracks or police cells for interrogation, where they are usually confined with adults, in violation of their rights under Ugandan and international law.105 Human Rights Watch was told by army sources in Kasese that children are routinely kept at army barracks for "debriefing," and it appears that the army continues to detain children and other civilians for unspecified periods of time with little oversight, a practice know as "lodging" which used to be widespread. For example, Human Rights Watch interviewed three young men at Mbarara barracks who had been in detention for several months, apparently because the army wanted to use them to identify ADF collaborators. Such suspected rebel collaborators whoare kept in extrajudicial detention at army barracks for the purpose of identifying other rebel suspects are commonly referred to as "computers" by army personnel.

The unwillingness of the army to grant human rights investigators adequate access to its facilities in order to investigate charges of illegal detentions at army barracks makes it difficult to establish the overall level of such abuses. The Uganda Human Rights Commission (HRC) is constitutionally empowered to visit all places of detention, but the UPDF has refused to respect this provision and insists that the HRC give notice and seek permission before visiting any military facilities. Such permission was denied when the HRC sought to visit military barracks in Gulu and Kasese.106 Requiring human rights monitors to seek such prior permission deprives the monitors of an element of surprise, and may allow the UPDF to temporarily "clean up" problems prior to the visit by moving detainees to other facilities. In 1997, the UPDF granted the HRC permission to visit four different UPDF facilities around Kampala, and the HRC found civilians in detention at all four of these facilities. The UPDF sought to justify these detentions on the basis of the National Resistance Army Statute of 1992, which allows the UPDF to subject civilians to military law under certain conditions.107 The National Resistance Army Statute, which is interpreted by UPDF as allowing for indefinite detention, is inconsistent with the 1995 constitution and international law.

UNICEF representatives, working with the Gulu Support the Children (GUSCO) and World Vision trauma centers, have been able to negotiate a relatively rapid release process for most children who flee from the LRA and find their way into UPDF custody. According to officials at the trauma centers, most children are released to the trauma centers by UPDF within less than a week, although some children may be kept longer if they are deemed to have valuable intelligence information. There are now "child rights" liaison desks established at the UPDF central barracks in the north, with staff assigned to expedite the departure of children from the barracks. These desks were recently established in Gulu, Arua, Kitgum, Adjumani and Moyo UPDF barracks.108 However, it appears that in some cases, especially where the UPDF feels they have captured what they consider to be an actual rebel-as opposed to an abducted child who escaped from LRA custody-children are kept longer.

Amy, who was seventeen at the time of her interview with Human Rights Watch in April 1998, was abducted by the LRA from Kitgum district in October 1995, and marched to Sudan for military training. In April 1996, according to her account, she returned to Uganda with a 400-strong contingent of LRA rebels. During an ambush at Pajule, she was captured in June 1996 by UPDF, who considered her a captured rebel and not an escapee from the LRA. She was kept at Pajule barracks for four days, and repeatedly beaten by UPDF soldiers. She was then taken to Kitgum barracks, where she was kept for three weeks: "It was very hot during the day and we were starving because there was not enough food. We did not get enough water, and sometimes had to stay for days without water. When you get one cup of water, it is supposed to last you two days." She was then brought to Gulu barracks, where she was kept for another two weeks together with another woman who had spent six years with the LRA. In August 1996, the two were brought to Lubiri barracks near Kampala, together with three male suspected LRA rebels. According to Amy, the three male suspects, Anthony Langol, Richard Ojara and Robert Otim, were severely beaten and received electric shocks at Lubiri. She believed that the three men were later killed by the UPDF at Lubiri barracks, an allegation which could not be independently confirmed by Human Rights Watch. Amy and the other woman were locked inside a darkened room for a long period, and then had to remain at Lubiri for several more months. She was finally released to one of the trauma centers in May 1997, nearly a year after she was originally captured.109

Some children have been detained for months before being formally charged and committed to remand. Eight children who were suspected of involvement in ADF rebel activities were held in the Kampala Central Police Station for more than nine months without ever being taken to court.110 Five of the children's families had not been notified of their arrests.111 One child was only seven years old, fiveyears below the age of criminal responsibility.112 According to a representative of Save the Children Fund UK (SCF-UK), child returnees are also regularly detained in Kasese police cells for interrogation.113

Although children charged with capital crimes are supposed to be committed to juvenile remand homes for a period not exceeding six months, in practice, some children have remained incarcerated on remand for as long as two years.114 According to a May 1997 Ugandan Human Rights Commission (HRC) report, Mutebi Ali, aged eighteen, had been detained for two years before he was taken away by ADF rebels during a prison breakout in February 1998.115 Dramadri Swadek, sixteen, had been in detention since his arrest in May 1996, spending two months in Koboko barracks and a year in Makingye barracks before being charged with treason and sent to Naguru Remand Home.116

Some of the children and young people detained on treason charges in Naguru Remand Center claim that they were physically abused while in army barracks or police cells.117 In 1997, Ahamed Bugembe, then aged eighteen, Sulaiman Ssemwogerere, eighteen, and Hamad Sebuliba, fourteen, told a HRC commissioner that they had been tortured while interrogators demanded that they explain theirpresence at a mosque. Maliki Alias, sixteen, reported to the HRC that he was beaten every day while held in Ologa army barracks.118

UNICEF, Save the Children Fund (UK, Denmark, and Norway), and the Uganda Human Rights Commission have expressed their concern over the treatment of children detained on treason charges and have brought the issue to the attention of the Ugandan government on numerous occasions and at the highest levels. While the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions has been responsive to appeals on behalf of particular detainees, it has not made a comprehensive effort to address the problem of the illegal detention and treatment of children accused of treason.119

72 Human Rights Watch interview with Constantine Karusoke, Commissioner, Human Rights Commission, Kampala, April 8, 1998. Amnesty International has also documented cases of persons who remained on remand for treason charges for almost four years. Amnesty International, Uganda: The Failure to Safeguard Human Rights (London: Amnesty International, 1992), p. 47.

73 Wamboga-Mugirya and Patrick Ongom Komakech, "WBNF `rebels' back in jail," Monitor, April 30, 1998, p. 6; Edith Kimuli, "WNBF chiefs set for trial," New Vision, May 6, 1998, p. 7.

74 "27 ADF suspects re-arrested," New Vision, May 23, 1998.

75 Human Rights Watch interview with Major General Salim Saleh, overseer, Ministry of Defense, Gulu, April 25, 1998.

76 Human Rights Watch interview with Frederick Jjuuko, Makerere University Law Professor, Kampala, April 14, 1998.

77 Human Rights Watch interview with Amos Turyashaba, Deputy Officer-in-Command, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998. According to the Uganda Penal Code, concealment or misprision of treason is committed by "any person who knowing that any person intends to commit treason does not give information thereof withall reasonable dispatch to the Minister, an administrative officer, a magistrate or an officer in charge of a police station, or use all reasonable endeavours to prevent the commission of the offense of treason." Uganda Penal Code, section 27.

78 Human Rights Watch interviews with suspects 1, 2, 3, 6, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998.

79 Human Rights Watch interviews with suspects 2, 5, 6, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998.

80 Human Rights Watch interviews with suspect 3, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998.

81 Human Rights Watch interviews with suspect 6, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998.

82 Human Rights Watch interviews with suspects 1, 2, 5, 6, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998.

83 Human Rights Watch interview with Moses Otwili, Assistant Superintendent (CID), Kasese police station, Kasese, April 24, 1998.

84 Ibid.

85 Human Rights Watch interviews with suspect 5, Mubuku Government Prison Farm, April 21, 1998.

86 Uganda Human Rights Commission, 1997 Report, para 3.13, p. 17.

87 Human Rights Watch interview with James Otto, Secretary-General, Human Rights Focus, Gulu, April 28, 1998.

88 Amnesty International, Uganda: The Failure to Safeguard Human Rights (London: Amnesty International, 1992), p. 47.

89 Moses Draku, "Uganda Treason Suspects Beg for Pardon," Pan-African News Service, December 24, 1998.

90 Uganda Human Rights Commission, 1997 Report, para 4.41, p. 31.

91 Human Rights Watch interview with Cecilia Ogwal, Chairperson, Interim Executive Committee of the UPC, Kampala, April 13, 1998.

92 Human Rights Watch interview with Wycliffe Birungi, Chairperson, Human Rights Committee of the Uganda Law Society, Kampala, April 10, 1998.

93 Amnesty International, Uganda: The Failure to Safeguard Human Rights (London: Amnesty International, 1992), p. 46.

94 Ibid., p. 51.

95 Amnesty International, Attacks on Human Rights Through the Misuse of Criminal Charges (London: Amnesty International, 1995).

96 "Lusse Acquitted, Remanded," New Vision, October 3, 1998.

97 Christopher Ojera, "Maj. Kakooza's arrests anger minister Dollo," Monitor, May 1, 1998; John Muto-Ono p'Lajur, "Gulu RDC attacks Museveni adviser," Monitor, April 6, 1998; Emmy Allio and Eric Lakidi, "Acholi MPs shun Kakooza," New Vision, May 9, 1998.

98 Trial on Indictments Decree 26 of 1971, Section 104(1).

99 Children's Statute, Sections 89 and 91 (6) (a).

100 Children's Statute, Section 100 (4).

101 Children's Statute, Section 105 (3).

102 Human Rights Watch email correspondence with Diane M. Swales, National Social Welfare Advisor, Save the Children Fund-UK, September 7, 1998.

103 UNICEF Report, "Children Charged with Treason: Brief Update Note," March 20, 1998.

104 Letter from Livingstone Sewanyana, Executive Director of the Foundation for Human Rights Initiative (FHRI), to Human Rights Watch, dated September 24, 1998.

105 UNICEF Report, "Children Charged with Treason: Brief Update Note," March 20, 1998; Commissioner C.K. Karusoke, "Children Under Treason Charge Being Kept at Naguru Remand Home," May 29, 1997, materials on file with Human Rights Watch. International and national laws state that juveniles in detention must be separated from adults. ICCPR, Article 10 (2) (b); Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 37 (c); U.N. Rules for the Protection of Juveniles Deprived of Their Liberty, Rule 29; U.N. Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice, Rule 10.1; Ugandan Children's Statute, Section 90 (8); U.N. Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, Rule 85 (2).

106 Uganda Human Rights Commission, 1997 Report, para 3.19, p. 18.

107 Ibid, para 3.13, p. 17 and para 4.43-44, p. 31.

108 Human Rights Watch email correspondence with Leila Pakkala, Information/Advocacy Officer, UNICEF Uganda Country Office, October 7, 1998.

109 Human Rights Watch interview, Gulu, April 28, 1998.

110 UNICEF Report, "Children Charged with Treason: Brief Update Note," 20 March 1998. Section 90 (3) of the Children's Statute states that "where release on bond is not granted, a child shall be detained in police custody for a maximum of twenty-four hours or until the child is taken before a court, whichever is sooner."

111 Commissioner C.K. Karusoke, "Children Under Treason Charge Being Kept at Naguru Remand Home," 29 May 1997. Section 90 (3) of the Children's Statute provides that "where a child is arrested by the police, his/her parents or guardians...shall be informed." See also Convention on the Rights of the Child, Article 37 (c); U.N. Rules for the Protection of Juveniles Deprived of Their Liberty, Rule 59; U.N. Standard Minimum Rules for the Administration of Juvenile Justice, Rule 13.4.

112 Section 89 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child sets the minimum age of criminal responsibility at 12 years.

113 Diane M. Swales, email correspondence, September 7, 1998.

114 Diane M. Swales, email correspondence, September 7, 1998. Article 10 (2) (b) of the ICCPR, Article 40 (2) (b) (iii) of the CRC, and Rule 17 of the Beijing Rules require states to adjudicate juvenile cases as quickly as possible. In October 1997, the Committee on the Rights of the Child expressed concern about the "administration of juvenile justice [in Uganda] particular, violations of the rights of children in detention centers, the remanding of children in adult prisons or police cells, long periods in custody, and the inadequacy of existing alternative measures to imprisonment." CRC/15/Add. 80.

115 The ages given in the report cited are the children's ages at the time of their interview with Commissioner C.K. Karusoke of the Ugandan Human Rights Commission on May 29, 1997. Commissioner C.K. Karusoke, "Children Under Treason Charge Being Kept at Naguru Remand Home," May 29, 1997.

116 Commissioner C.K Karusoke, "Children Under Treason Charge," p. 5. According to the Ugandan Children's Code, these cases should have been dismissed one year after the children were formally charged with treason.

117 Commissioner C.K. Karusoke, "Children Under Treason Charge." Article 37 (a) of the CRC sets out the right to be free from "torture or other cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment." This right is also guaranteed by article 7 of the ICCPR, and by the Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman, or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.

118 Commissioner C.K. Karusoke, "Children Under Treason Charge."

119 Diane Swales, email correspondence, September 7, 1998.

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