The parents of the Weekes triplets killed in a fire at a Qatar mall in 2012 say a UN report has confirmed their concerns with the Qatari legal system.

Martin and Jane Weekes' two-year-old triplets Lillie, Jackson and Wilsher were killed in the fire at the Villaggio Mall fire in Doha, Qatar, on 28 May 2012.

The United Nations Report of the Special Rapporteur specifically cited the Villaggio mall fire and highlighted the lack of due process affected families such as the Weekes had faced for the last three years.

The report raised concerns about "serious" shortcomings in the Qatari legal system, which "negatively affect the independence and impartiality of the justice system, as well as the realisation of people's human rights."


The Weekes expressed disappointment that this legal system had allowed the man convicted of their children's involuntary manslaughter, Ali Bin Jasmin Bin Thani Al Thani, to remain as Qatar's ambassador to the European Union while he appealed his sentence.

Mr Al Thani and his co-convicted wife Iman Al Kuwari had not yet served any of their six year prison sentences. Mr Al Thani had only attended a single hearing since the triplets' death.

In April, Prime Minister John Key met with the Emir of Qatar, Tamim bin Hamid Al Thani, to discuss the death of the Weekes triplets.

At the time, the Emir responded that he was "utterly committed to making sure those who are responsible will be held to account."

"We can only hope that the Qataris take note of this report, because it is this very system that has meant we cannot escape the horrors of 28 May 2012," Mrs Weekes said.

"We know, more than anyone, the inadequacies of this legal system, and the immediate need to change it.

"We remain very distressed that this system has failed us so far, and that our children's killers use that system to their own benefit including not even attending court."

The UN Report recommended that Qatar improve its legal systems - noting its "considerable financial capabilities" to do so. It also recommended that human rights mechanism like the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights be ratified.


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