Practice Relating to Rule 135. Children
In 2009, in its combined third and fourth periodic reports to the Committee on the Rights of the Child, Viet Nam stated:
2. Children in armed conflicts …
243. … Viet Nam … suffers from serious consequences of historically prolonged and fierce wars. Children have been amongst those that have suffered the most. The country has made significant efforts in the communication and education as well as in prevention and control of unexploded bombs, mines and ordnances left behind from wars. This has been carried out through organizing training courses for children and their families, as well as for staff at all levels. In addition, communication campaigns have been launched via the mass media and children have been provided with peer education, community-based education, as well as the integration of communication and education on the dangers of mines and bombs into education curriculums of primary schools in areas suffering serious consequences of unexploded mines, bombs and ordnances. Support and subsidy have been given to families and child victims of toxic chemicals, children wounded by unexploded mines, bombs and ordnances left from wars. In addition to the Government’s efforts, Viet Nam has received important assistance from international organizations, governments of other countries and non-governmental organizations. In 2006, 23,683 child victims of toxic chemicals received care and assistance. Thousands of children however, still suffer from disfigurement, malformations, and long-term health and brain-detriments as a result of their parents being infected with toxic chemicals, particularly, Agent Orange, or due to unexploded mines and bombs left over from wars.
244. In the future, Viet Nam will join international community efforts in improving education and health conditions, mobilizing resources and providing technical support to social programmes that address long-term consequences of the wars, and to therefore, speed up the implementation of relevant international legal provisions. The Government of Viet Nam calls for further supports from the United Nations, international organizations and governments of other countries to help the country redress consequences of the wars, especially consequences that affect children.
[footnote in original omitted]
Viet Nam’s Penal Code (1999) provides that the death penalty “shall not apply to juvenile offenders … at the time of committing crimes or being tried”.