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Balancing Pragmatism and Principle: UNICEF, Child Rights and Child Génocidaires

Barrett, Jastine (2018) Balancing Pragmatism and Principle: UNICEF, Child Rights and Child Génocidaires. Human Rights Law Review, 18 (1). pp. 31-59. ISSN 1461-7781. E-ISSN 1744-1021. (doi:10.1093/hrlr/ngx017) (KAR id:62320)

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Following the 1994 genocide, more than 4,500 children were held in Rwandan prisons, most accused of genocide-related crimes. Based on field research, this article examines how the United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) negotiated the tension between pragmatism and principle in its approach to child génocidaires. It profiles the contextual approach adopted by UNICEF in interpreting international juvenile justice standards, drawing out tensions within UNICEF and between UNICEF and other actors over how best to implement the Convention on the Rights of the Child (particularly as regards detention). It then evaluates whether there was a risk of weakening the normative content in the desire to implement the standards in a socially-sensitive and context-specific way. I argue that by adopting a pragmatic yet principled approach UNICEF was, to some extent, able to enhance the rights of child perpetrators in the difficult context of post-genocide Rwanda

Item Type: Article
DOI/Identification number: 10.1093/hrlr/ngx017
Uncontrolled keywords: children's rights, juvenile justice, child offenders, genocide, post-conflict justice, United Nations Children’s Fund, Rwanda
Subjects: K Law
Divisions: Divisions > Division for the Study of Law, Society and Social Justice > Kent Law School
Depositing User: Sian Robertson
Date Deposited: 18 Jul 2017 14:40 UTC
Last Modified: 16 Feb 2021 13:46 UTC
Resource URI: (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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