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Turkmenistan[1] [print]

Last edited: December 2005

 

Summary and Analysis

 

The Turkmen Parliament ratified the Convention on the Rights of the Child on September 23, 1994. Turkmenistan recognizes the primacy of generally recognized norms of international law.[2] Turkmen judicial statistics contain no specific information about judicial decisions based on the provisions of the Convention or of any other international instruments.[3]

 

According to the governmental web site, since Turkmenistan joined the Convention, it has regularly demonstrated its adherence to its implementation.[4] As part of the implementation, a new law named The Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act of July 5, 2002 was enacted to enshrine the provisions of the Convention into the domestic legal system. The Law determines the legal status of children and establishes state guarantees of their rights and interests as well as envisaging their physical and spiritual development and formation of their civil consciousness.[5]

 

All the substantial information with regards to Turkmenistan's implementation of Article 12 of the CRC with respect to the child's right to be heard in child protective proceedings came from the initial report by the state to the Committee on the Rights of the Child.[6]

 

According to the aforementioned report, children have the right to express their opinions and views freely, and their opinions and wishes must be taken into account, with due regard for their age and maturity, when deciding any matter of relevance to them.[7] A child's parents or legal representatives must treat him or her as an individual, due account being taken of the child's personality, age and sex. Parents or legal representatives must help a child to perform autonomous actions intended to realize and protect his or her rights and legitimate interests, having regard to the child's age and dispositive legal capacity.[8] Unfortunately we have been unable to find the legislation that guarantees this right.

 

In civil cases, the rights and interests of minors aged between 15 and 18 years are defended in court by their parents; however, the court must summon the minors themselves to take part in the proceedings.[9]

 

Under Turkmen law, both parents are equally responsible for the life, health and proper education of their child.[10] When parents cannot agree on questions relating to the upbringing of the child or the child's place of residence (if the parents live apart), disputes are resolved by a court with input from agencies of tutorship and guardianship, based on the interests of the child and taking into account the child's opinion.[11]

 

Both or either parent may be deprived of their parental rights if it can be established that they are shirking their obligation to raise their children, abusing their parental rights, engaging in child abuse, exerting a harmful influence on their children through their immoral or antisocial behavior, or are chronic alcoholics or drug addicts.[12] Parents may be legally deprived of their rights pursuant to a petition from either parent or person in loco parentis, a procurator, or any agency or institution charged with protecting the rights of minor children. Cases involving forfeiture of parental rights are heard with the participation of the procurator and agencies of tutorship and guardianship.[13]

 

Other sources for information on child care services were attained from UNICEF; Turkmenistan has collaborated with UNICEF to establish joint activities within the framework of five-year projects, which encompass healthcare, education, issues of women and childcare, and assistance with the realization of the rights of children.[14] The Five-Year Action Plan consisted of three programs, included 11 projects on implementation of the Convention, in particular: the rights for life, care, growth, health, food, education, use of pure sweet water, sanitary services, and protection.

 

Related Sources of Law (In Order of Authority)

 

Constitution

 

КОНСТИТУЦИОННЫЙ ЗАКОН ТУРКМЕНИСТАНА[15]

Статья 25.

 

Женщина и мужчина по достижении брачного возраста имеют право по взаимному согласию вступить в брак и создать семью. Супруги в семейных отношениях равноправны.

Родители или заменяющие их лица имеют право и обязаны воспитывать детей, заботиться об их здоровье и развитии, обучении, готовить к труду, прививать культуру и уважение к законам, национальным традициям. Совершеннолетние дети обязаны заботиться о родителях и оказывать им помощь.


Статья 26.

 

Граждане Туркменистана имеют право на свободу убеждений и их свободное выражение, а также на получение информации, если она не является государственной, служебной или коммерческой тайной.

 

Статья 34.

 

Граждане имеют право на социальное обеспечение в старости, в случае болезни, инвалидности, утраты трудоспособности, потери кормильца, безработицы.


Многодетным семьям, детям, лишившимся родителей, участникам войны и другим лицам, утратившим здоровье при защите государственных или общественных интересов, предоставляются дополнительные поддержка и льготы из общественных средств.

Порядок и условия осуществления этого права регулируются законом.


International law

 

Çaganyň hukuklary hakyndaky konwensiýa [16]

 

12-nji madda

1. Gatnaşyjy döwletler öz garaýyşlaryny kesgitlemäge ukyply bolan çaga şol garaýyşlary çaga degişli meseleleriň ählisi boýunça erkin beýan etmek hukugyny üpjün edýär, özi-de çaganyň garaýyşlaryna çaganyň ýaşyna we kämilligine görä degişli üns berilýär.

2. Şu maksat bilen, çaga, hususan-da, özüne degişli bolan islendik sud ýa-da dolandyryş seljermesiniň barşynda pikiriniň ýa-ha göniden ýa-da wekiliň ýa bolmasa degişli edaranyň üsti bilen milli kanunlaryň amal kadalaryna laýyk tertipde diňlenilmegine mümkinçilik berilýär.

 

Statutes

 

The Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act [17]

Original text unavailable

 

Кодекс о браке и семье Туркменской ССР[18]

Раздел III. – СЕМЬЯ

Глава 8. ПРАВА И ОБЯЗАННОСТИ РОДИТЕЛЕЙ ПО ВОСПИТАНИЮ ДЕТЕЙ

 

Статья 63. Обязанности родителей по воспитанию детей
Родители обязаны воспитывать своих детей, заботиться об их физическом развитии и обучении, готовить к общественно полезному труду, растить достойными членами социалистического общества.

Родительские права не могут осуществляться в противоречии с интересами детей.
(В редакции Указа Президиума Верховного Совета Туркменской ССР от 20 мая 1980 г. Ведомости Верховного Совета ТССР, 1980, № 10, ст. 83).


Статья 64. Обязанности родителей по защите прав и интересов детей
Защита прав и интересов несовершеннолетних детей лежит на их родителях.
Родители признаются законными представителями своих несовершеннолетних детей и выступают в защиту их прав и интересов во всех учреждениях, в том числе судебных, без особого полномочия.

Глава 13. ОПЕКА И ПОПЕЧИТЕЛЬСТВО

Статья 163. Гражданско-правовые обязанности опекунов и попечителей
Опекуны являются законными представителями подопечных и совершают от их имени и в их интересах все необходимые сделки.
Попечители оказывают подопечным содействие при осуществлении ими своих прав и выполнении обязанностей, а также охраняют их от злоупотреблений со стороны третьих лиц.
Попечители над несовершеннолетними в возрасте от пятнадцати до восемнадцати лет дают согласие на совершение подопечными тех сделок, которые по закону несовершеннолетний не вправе совершать самостоятельно.
Попечители над ограниченно дееспособными лицами дают согласие на получение этими лицами причитающихся им платежей и на распоряжение полученными денежными суммами и иным имуществом подопечного в соответствии с частью второй статьи 16 Гражданского кодекса Туркменской ССР.

 

ГРАЖДАНСКИЙ КОДЕКС ТУРКМЕНИСТАНА[19]

 

Статья 31. Опека и попечительство

 

1. Опека и попечительство устанавливаются для защиты прав и интересов недееспособных или ограниченно дееспособных физических лиц.

2. Опекуны и попечители выступают в защиту прав и интересов своих подопечных в отношениях с любыми лицами и организациями, в том числе в судах, без специального полномочия.

3. Опека и попечительство над несовершеннолетними физическими лицами устанавливаются при отсутствии у них родителей, усыновителей, лишении судом родителей родительских прав, а также в случаях, когда такие физические лица по иным причинам остались без родительского попечения, в частности, когда родители уклоняются от их воспитания либо защиты их прав и интересов.

 

Статья 33. Попечительство

 

1. Попечительство устанавливается над ограниченно дееспособными физическими лицами.

2. Попечители дают согласие на совершение тех сделок, которые физические лица, находящиеся под попечительством, не вправе совершать самостоятельно.

Попечители оказывают подопечным содействие в осуществлении ими своих прав и исполнении обязанностей, а также охраняют их от злоупотреблений со стороны третьих лиц.

 

Статья 34. Органы опеки и попечительства

 

1. Органами опеки и попечительства являются местные органы самоуправления, а в населенных пунктах, где их нет, - хякимы этрапов или городов.

2. Суд обязан в течение трех дней со времени вступления в законную силу решения о признании физического лица недееспособным или об ограничении его дееспособности сообщить об этом органу опеки и попечительства по месту жительства такого физического лица для установления над ним опеки или попечительства.

3. Орган опеки и попечительства по месту жительства подопечных осуществляет надзор за деятельностью их опекунов и попечителей.

 

Статья 35. Опекуны и попечители

 

1. Опекунами и попечителями могут назначаться только совершеннолетние дееспособные физические лица. Не могут быть назначены опекунами и попечителями физические лица, лишенные родительских прав.

2. Опекун или попечитель может быть назначен только с его согласия. При этом должны учитываться его нравственные и иные личные качества, способность к выполнению обязанностей опекуна или попечителя, отношения, существующие между ним и лицом, нуждающимся в опеке или попечительстве, а если это возможно – и желание подопечного.

3. Опекун или попечитель назначается органом опеки и попечительства по месту жительства лица, нуждающегося в опеке или попечительстве, в течение месяца с момента, когда указанным органам стало известно о необходимости установления опеки или попечительства над физическим лицом. При наличии заслуживающих внимания обстоятельств опекун или попечитель может быть назначен органом опеки и попечительства по месту жительства опекуна (попечителя). Если лицу, нуждающемуся в опеке или попечительстве, в течение месяца не назначен опекун или попечитель, исполнение обязанностей опекуна или попечителя временно возлагается на орган опеки и попечительства.

Назначение опекуна или попечителя может быть обжаловано в суде заинтересованными лицами.

4. Опекунами и попечителями физических лиц, нуждающихся в опеке или попечительстве и находящихся или помещенных в соответствующие воспитательные, лечебные учреждения, учреждения социальной защиты населения или другие аналогичные учреждения, являются эти учреждения.

 

Translation

 

Constitution

 

The Constitution[20]

 

Article 25

 

Men and women, upon reaching the age of marriage, have the right to mutually consent to enter into marriage and form a family. In their familial relations, spouses have equal rights. Parents or guardians have the right and obligation to raise children, ensure their health, development, and education, prepare them for work, and instill in them culture and respect for the laws and historical and cultural traditions. Adult children have the obligation of caring for parents and providing them with assistance.

 

Article 26

 

Citizens of Turkmenistan have the right to freedom of conviction and the free expression of those convictions. They also have the right to receive information unless such information is a governmental, official, or commercial secret.

 

Article 34

 

Citizens have the right to social services if they are elderly, sick, disabled, unable to work, have lost their provider, or are unemployed. Families with many children, children who have lost their parents, and war veterans and other people whose health has suffered in defense of governmental or social interests are provided with additional assistance and privileges out of social funds. The manner of and conditions for exercising this right are regulated by law.

 

International law

 

The United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child[21]

 

Article 12

 

1. States Parties shall assure to the child who is capable of forming his or her own views the right to express those views freely in all matters affecting the child, the views of the child being given due weight in accordance with the age and maturity of the child.

2. For this purpose, the child shall in particular be provided the opportunity to be heard in any judicial and administrative proceedings affecting the child, either directly, or through a representative or an appropriate body, in a manner consistent with the procedural rules of national law.

 

Statutes

 

The Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act [22]

 

Article 23 of the Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act stipulates:[23]

 

“The State shall protect the rights and legitimate interests of children.” This protection “shall be afforded, in the family, by the parents (or legal representatives), and in educational institutions and specialized medical rehabilitative institutions, by the administration of the institution, the central and local authorities, and relevant voluntary organizations”.

 

The Family Code[24]

 

CHAPTER III – The Family

Part 8: RIGHTS AND RESPONSIBILITIES OF PARENTS FOR THE UPBRINGING OF CHILDREN


Section 63. The responsibilities of parents for the upbringing of children


Parents are obliged to bring up their own children, to care for their physical development and education, to prepare them for socially beneficial labor, to develop them as worthy citizens of socialist society.

Parental rights cannot be realized in contradiction with children's rights.

Section 64. Responsibilities of the parents for the protection of the rights and interests of children

The protection of rights and interests of minor children is assigned to their parents.
Parents are recognized as the legal representatives of their minor children and speak out in defense of their rights and interests in all institutions, including judicial ones, without special permission (authority, power).

 

Part 13: GUARDIANSHIP AND TRUSTEESHIP

 

Section 163. Civil law obligations of guardians and trustees

Guardians are the legal representatives of their wards and carry out, in their name and in their interests, all necessary transactions.

Trustees provide their wards assistance with the implementation of their rights and fulfillment of their obligations, and also protect them from abuse from the side of third parties.

Trustees of a minor from the ages of fifteen to eighteen give their agreement to the carrying out by the wards of those transactions which, by law, a minor does not have the right to carry out independently.

 

The Civil code[25]

 

Article 31. Guardianship and tutorship

 

1. Guardianship and tutorship shall be established for protection of rights and interests of incapable natural persons or natural persons with limited active capacity.

2. Guardians and tutors shall appear for defense of rights and interests of wards in relations with any persons and organizations, including courts without special competency.

3. Guardianship and tutorship shall be established over under age natural persons in the absence of parents, adopters, and depriving of paternal rights by court, as well as in cases when such persons on other reasons shall remain without paternal care, and, in particularly, when parents shall avoid their breeding or protection of rights and interests.

 

Article 33. Tutorship

 

1. Tutorship shall be established under natural persons with limited active capacity.

2. Tutors shall approve perpetration of deals which wards have not rights to perpetrate independently.

Tutors shall assist to wards in realization of their rights and fulfillment of obligations, as well as shall protect them from abuse of third persons sides.

 

Article 34. Organs of Guardianship and Tutorship

 

1. Organs of Guardianship and Tutorship shall be local government organs, and where there are not- chaykhims of etraps or towns.

 …

 

Article 35. Guardians and Tutors

2. Guardian or Tutor can be appointed only with his approval. At this shall be taken into consideration his moral and other personal features, ability to execute obligations of tutors or guardians, relations existing among him and person being required  in  guardianship and tutorship, and if  possible - willing of ward.

 

Additional Resources and Links/Research Path

 

www.turkmenistanembassy.org – Turkmenistan embassy in the U.S.

http://www.turkmenistan.gov.tm/index_eng.html - Turkmenistan government

http://countryturkmenistan.tripod.com/ - Information on Turkmenistan

http://turkmeniya.tripod.com/turkmenistanlaws/index.html - Turkmenistan laws

http://www.eurasianet.org/turkmenistan.project/ - Turkmenistan project 

http://www.eurasianet.org/resource/turkmenistan/ - Eurasia net

http://www.abanet.org/ceeli/countries/turkmenistan/home.html - American bar association, central European and Eurasian law initiative

http://www.unicef.org/turkmenistan/ - UNICEF

 

 



Endnotes

[1] This page is also available as a .pdf Document, and Word Document.

[2] The Constitution, Article 6.

[3] Committee on the Rights of the Child, Initial Report, U.N. Doc. CRC/C/TKM/1 (Dec. 5, 2005), ¶35, available here, and also as .pdf Document, and also as Word Document.

[4] Turkmenistan government website, available at http://www.turkmenistan.gov.tm/index_eng.html.

[5] Based on an article named “Turkmenistan – UN Children's Fund: the Aspects of Collaboration /07.06.2005/” available at http://www.turkmenistan.gov.tm/people/pep_soc/070605_eng.htm.

[6] According to other sources, the regime will not guarantee basic democratic freedoms such as freedom of expression. See, e.g., Turkmenistan: U.S. Department of State Country Reports on Human Rights Practices (2004), available at http://www.state.gov/g/drl/rls/hrrpt/2004/41714.htm.

[7] Initial Report, supra note 2, ¶81, Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act, Article 11.

[8] Id., Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act, Article 24.

[9] Initial Report, supra note 2, ¶82, Code of Civil Procedure, Article 98.

[10] Id., at ¶103, Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act, Article 24, ¶3.

[11] Id., at ¶103.

[12] Id., at ¶107, the Marriage and Family Code, Article 70.

[13] Id., at ¶107, the Marriage and Family Code, Article 71.

[14] Turkmenistan – UN Children's Fund, supra note 4.

[16] The Convention on the Rights of the Child, available at http://www.unicef.org/magic/media/documents/CRC_turkmen_language_version.pdf.

[17] The Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act.  We were unable to locate the text of this legislation.

[20] The Constitution, unofficial Translation, available at http://turkmeniya.tripod.com/turkmenistanlaws/id10.html.

[21] G.A. Res. 44/125, U.N. GAOR, 44th Session, Supp. No. 49, U.N. Doc. A/44/736 (1989), available at http://www.ohchr.org/english/law/crc.htm.

[22] The Rights of the Child (Guarantees) Act. We were unable to locate the text of this legislation.

[23] Initial Report, supra note 2, ¶36.

[24] Unofficial translation from Russian by a translator provided by the Jerome N. Frank Legal Services Organization. The sections from the Family Code brought here were enacted in 25.12.1969 by the High Soviet of Soviet Socialist Republic of Turkmenistan and to the best of our knowledge still apply in the state.  

[25] The CIVIL CODE OF TURKMENISTAN SAPURMURAT TURKMENBASHI, Butler William E. (ed.), Turkmenistan Civil Code of Saparmurat Turkmenbashi, The Vinogradoff Institute University College London, 1999.

 

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