South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

LAHORE: The Human Rights Commission of Pakistan (HRCP) on Friday called upon the government to ensure that there is no immunity for the state agents violating prohibition of torture by Pakistani law as well as international human rights.

In a statement issued in connection with the International Day against Torture on June 26, the HRCP said: “This year the world commemorates the International Day against Torture soon after Pakistan has ratified the ‘UN convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment (UNCAT)’.

“While the ratification testifies a commitment by Islamabad against torture, it is only a good first step and a lot more needs to be done to translate that resolve into reality. Pakistan must now make implementation of UNCAT as key priority through effective measures to make the protections against torture provided under the UN convention enforceable through domestic courts,” the statement said.

The HRCP also urged Pakistan to sign the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture, which provided further effective measures to prevent torture and other forms of ill-treatment. The government must do everything within its power to end immunity as it’s under an obligation to investigate every allegation of torture and prosecute those responsible for it.

It must also ensure, through the domestic legal system, provision of an enforceable right to fair and adequate compensation, including the means for as full rehabilitation as possible, to victims of torture, the commission said.

Source: Dawn – 26.06.2010

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