Harboring minors in Lebanese prisons: “rehabilitation” of youths to become “criminals”!

Juveniles in Lebanese prisons suffer from inadequate psychological and physical conditions. No qualified buildings, no judges with specific qualifications, no military trained to handle it. They, in their shelters that are supposed to rehabilitate them to be active members of society, are subjected to beatings, torture, sexual harassment and intimidation… until the youth buildings and centers that receive them have become “corridors” to to “rehabilitate” them for further involvement in the world of crime.

The “Mubadara” center is located in the vicinity of the Dahr Al-Bashiq State Hospital. It was established by the Ministry of Justice in collaboration with the Ministry of Home Affairs and the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC). Reduced penalties.

“The text of my childhood is gone,” this is how “Nour” (a pseudonym) describes her condition after spending more than three years in the building of the center, which the website of the Ministry of Justice more than 7 devoted pages. to talk about him and the “pink life” he provides for girls: living in safe social and psychological conditions, rehabilitation and training projects, education and production programs… It seems far from the life that “Noor” and her arrested colleagues lived It is enough to sum up the times she attempted suicide to show the tragedy she experienced in the center she entered before she was over 12 years old, after fleeing her paternal grandmother’s home and was caught with drugs.

Suddenly she finds herself in a strange center (nine girls are housed in three rooms, run by the caretaker MR), sharing one room with three girls several years older than her. The little girl did not understand why the three girls were glued to each other at night, and why one of the women arrested on charges of prostitution invited her to call her as soon as she left the center to meet a “beautiful young ” to get. man who would take care of her”, while another arrested woman offered to teach her “car” to steal cars? She had nothing to do with the bullying of other detainees and her “undressing” of the clothes her mother had bought for her on the one hand, and before the punishment of the guards who accused her of masturbating because she slept in her. underwear. She spends most of her time motionless on her bed, and her only “soul” is the long minutes she spends in the toilet when it is empty to regain her ability to speak and practice her hobby of singing. Suffering psychological trauma and anxiety that left her unable to sleep, she spent long days under the Sufi shrine crying bitterly, until she was referred to a psychiatrist who advised her to take an anti-anxiety to get medication so she can sleep. Nour understood only one word from the doctor: “Nerve medicine,” and she refused to take it. After the doctor traveled and the center’s administration refused to follow up on her psychological condition with another doctor, officials found no solution to her “disobedience” to orders other than to move her to the solitary disciplinary room in the Roumieh- not referring to prison. There she was tied to a “handcuff” and the soldier threw cold water on her and started beating her. Every time Nour was asked to move to the lonely room on the same floor, she knew that Roumieh’s soldiers would beat her. However, the biggest horror for her is staying in a dark room for 3 days, as she is the one who is afraid of the dark. Horror prevented her from complaining to her mother, who visited her weekly, and each time she noticed that her daughter “turned into a body without a soul, barely speaking and without expressing what was on her mind continue.”

The story of “Noor” intersects with the story of her colleague, “Samar” (a pseudonym), who confirms that she was harassed and beaten by the soldiers. A reality that was greater than Nour’s ability to bear, prompting her to more than one attempt to commit suicide or attempt to suffocate herself with Sufi clothes and haram. Her punishment was detention in the solitary room, in a center that was supposed to cater. psychological care and a safe environment for minors.

Qualification missing
Time passes very slowly for minors in Mubadara Center: Books and notebooks are banned in a center about which the Ministry of Justice website says that “educational programs are a priority (in which) for minors who have not had the opportunity to ‘ to obtain a school culture appropriate for their age,” and that “this program is the responsibility of The director of social activities, which is focused on two or more levels: the education of the illiterate, raising the school standard and informatics.
“Noor” does not understand any of the phrases mentioned on the website, but she confirms that none of this is originally found in the center, since the rehabilitation programs according to the minor prisoners are limited to an association that holds training courses on teaching sewing and crocheting on Mondays and Wednesdays, in addition to the Guidance Association, and Al-Islah, which used to teach female prisoners to draw on Thursdays. As for Nour, the only qualification she received is teaching her the skill to clean toilets and the room of her and her colleagues, and watching Madame Rosie cook molokhia for them every Friday.

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