As many as 17,862 cases of sexual assault against children were reported throughout the country in the last five years, the National Assembly was informed on Wednesday, BBC Urdu Service reported.

According to the statistics presented in the lower house by the human rights ministry, 10,620 girls and 7,242 boys were subjected to sexual abuse during the period under review.

Furthermore, police filed 13,263 cases of rape during the said period, although only 112 of those cases returned guilty verdicts. Of the 112 found guilty, 25 were condemned to death and 11 were sentenced to life imprisonment.

Human Rights Minister Mumtaz Ahmed Tarar said that laws on the safety of children do exist in the country but are not implemented. He said that substandard police investigation and lapses in the judicial system create hurdles in the prevention of such crimes.