Thursday, 25. October 2012, Geneva.
Norway welcomes the delegation of Benin and the presentation of its national report.
Benin’s recent ratification of the Second Optional Protocol to the ICCPR aiming at the abolition of the death penalty reflects the positive trend on human rights protection in the country. In moving further away from the death penalty, Benin is setting the standard for other countries in the region to follow.
Although Benin has adopted legislation to counteract trafficking in children, human trafficking remains a serious problem. A high number of persons are reportedly trafficked to, from, and within Benin for the purposes of sexual exploitation and forced labor, and the efforts to address trafficking in adults seem to be lacking.
- We recommend that Benin finalizes and enacts draft legislation that prohibits all forms of human trafficking and that trafficking in children is effectively investigated and prosecuted. To this end, we recommend that all law enforcement officers and the judiciary receive adequate training on human trafficking and that protective services are provided to the witnesses and victims of trafficking.
Norway notes with concern that Benin maintains discriminatory practices towards the community of lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transsexuals.
- We recommend Benin to intensify efforts to address discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation or gender identity, and to investigate and prosecute crimes against LGBT-community members.
Prison conditions continue to be harsh. Overcrowding and lack of medical care pose risks to prisoners’ health. Norway is particularly concerned about the high number of pre-trial detainees in prisons and the delay in the administration of justice
- We recommend that Benin uses all possible means to improve prison conditions, especially for minors, and that legislation is implemented to minimize the detention time prior to trial.
No advance questions submitted.