the Weapons Act the Government may upon application of the young persons legal

The weapons act the government may upon application

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the Weapons Act, the Government may, upon application of the young person’s legal guardian, grant exemptions in justified cases, but this does not affect the general rule that persons under the age of 18 are not allowed to carry weapons. It may therefore be assumed that article 44 of the Liechtenstein Constitution would not currently require persons under the age of 18 to serve in the defense of the country. 49. Moreover, since a ratified treaty becomes part of national law in Liechtenstein on the date of entry into force without the need to enact special legislation, as already explained in Part I Chapter E of this report, the provisions of the Optional Protocol are directly applicable in Liechtenstein, if they are sufficiently specific. This entails that participation of persons under the age of 18 in the national defense is not permissible. Article 4: Armed groups 50. Article 4, paragraph 2 of the Optional Protocol requires all States Parties to take all feasible measures to prevent the recruitment and use of persons under the age of 18 by armed groups, including the adoption of legal measures necessary to prohibit and criminalize such practices. 51. There are currently no armed groups on Liechtenstein territory, nor have such armed groups or the recruitment of children been known in the past. 52. The offense of soliciting children by armed groups in Liechtenstein would fall within the scope of article 279 of the Criminal Code (StGB, LGBl. 1988 No. 37 as amended). According to this provision, a person shall be punished with up to three years’ imprisonment who, without authorization, establishes an armed group, or even a group intended to be armed, or who arms an existing group, fulfills a leading function in such a group, solicits or enlists members for such a group, trains them militarily or otherwise for combat, or supplies the group with arms, means of transport, or telecommunication facilities, or supports the group financially or in other significant manner. The recruitment and solicitation of members of armed groups is therefore criminalized. Even if the provision does not refer specifically to persons under the age of 18, the solicitation of young people for participation in such groups is covered by the offense set out in § 279 StGB. 53. Accordingly, the offense of armed groups set out in § 279 StGB covers recruitment by armed groups, which corresponds to the requirements contained in article 4, paragraph 2 of the Optional Protocol. Solicitation and recruitment of members are offenses under criminal law, while mere membership in the armed group is not. A person soliciting or recruiting children would therefore be punishable under § 279 StGB, but not the recruited child. It may be assumed that this offense covers practically all cases envisaged by article 4, paragraph 2 of the Optional Protocol.
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  • Summer '16
  • Ramon Wawire
  • European Union, Council of Europe, European Convention on Human Rights

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