Human Rights Watch, in 35-page report, “Extreme Measures: Abuses against Children Detained as National Security Threats”, said the jailing of the minors is in response to extremist armed groups such as the Islamic State and Boko Haram.
Some children, including babies, are detained when their mothers are arrested on suspicion of security-related offenses. Security forces have tortured children and treated them in other cruel, inhuman, and degrading ways to elicit confessions, extract intelligence information, or as punishment.
Former child detainees report having been beaten, raped, given electric shocks, forced to remain in prolonged stress positions and to strip nude, and threatened with execution.
In Nigeria and Somalia are often detained under appalling conditions, and confined in overcrowded cells with adults, and with grossly inadequate food and medical care.
HRW reported that in Nigeria unknown numbers of children have died in detention from a lack of medical care, starvation, dehydration, or as a result of torture.
The rights group said governments should immediately end all use of detention without charge for children, and transfer children associated with armed groups to child protection authorities for rehabilitation.
– CAJ News