On September 20, 2018 the UN Committee on the Protection of the Rights of Migrant Workers and Members of their Families (CMW) published a list of questions for the 3rd periodic report of Azerbaijan. Among the questions addressed to Azerbaijan were those that had been compiled by ADC Memorial for the 29th session of the UN CMW with regard to discrimination against migrant workers and members of their families, as well as measures adopted by the government of Azerbaijan to protect them. One of the most important issues is the protection of the rights of children, who leave the country with their parents: their right to education, the right to live in a family, prevention of them being placed in detention if they are recognized to be “violators of immigration regime” and prevention of separation from their parents due to the migration status of the family members.
In the list of questions it had compiled, ADC Memorial stressed the utmost importance of access to primary and secondary education for migrant children. Schools in Russia often refuse to accept migrant children because of the troubles with their registration at the place of residence, and thus children are forced to miss years of school. Hence, the rights of school-aged migrant children are violated, and this requires attention and response from the country of their citizenship. Human rights activists also raised the problem of placing Azerbaijani citizens in “temporary detention centers for foreign citizens”, which are in fact prisons, and placement of minors into children’s “reception centers”. This was reflected in the Committee’s request to provide statistical data on migrants held in custody abroad. Many of these people do not receive quality legal assistance, which results in violation of their rights. The Committee requested information from the Azerbaijani government on the work of the consular services to protect the rights of its citizens, who work abroad.
ADC Memorial expressed its hope that experts of the UN CMW will also raise these issues during the upcoming review of Azerbaijan’s compliance with the Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families.