HC Deb 25 March 2003 vol 402 c123W
Llew Smith

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what guidelines are given under the International Convention on the Rights of the Child on the interrogation of children under 10 in respect of the alleged illegal activities of their parents. [103102]

Hilary Benn

I have been asked to reply.

"Provision of Therapy for Child Witnesses Prior to a Criminal Trial: Practice Guidance" was issued by the Home Office, the Crown Prosecution Service and the Department of Health in 2001 to assist child care professionals and lawyers. It refers to Article 3 of the United Nations Convention which make the best interests of the child a primary consideration and Article 12 which gives children the right to express themselves and to be heard.

Detailed guidance on planning and conducting interviews with children, including very young children, was issued to the police in 2002 (Achieving Best Evidence in Criminal Proceedings

Neither document refers specifically to the questioning of children about the alleged activities of their parents.