Prohibition against torture

No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, may be invoked as a justification of torture, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency. This principle is strongly underlined in the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment, adopted by the United Nations in 1984 and entered into force in 1987. A committee of experts - Committee Against Torture, CAT - was established under the Convention and mandated to oversee and monitor the implementation by its State Parties. The Committee may also, under certain conditions, consider individual complaints.

In 1985, the Commission on Human Rights established a Special rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment to examine, monitor and report on torture worldwide. The special rapporteur reports regularly to the Human Rights Council.

The United Nations Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture was established in 1981 to provide humanitarian assistance to victims of torture and their families. The Fund receives voluntary contributions from governments, NGOs and individuals.

More on UN and prohibition against torture

CAT/-

Committee Against Torture

Ex. CAT/C/55/Add.7

Committee Against Torture. Country report, 55th session. Addendum 7

Human Rights, conventions and declaration

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Last modified: 2023-01-02