Saturday, 26 June 2010 03:00

The United Nations in Iraq Calls on Iraq to Ratify the Convention against Torture

Baghdad, 26 June 2010: On the occasion of the International Day in Support of Victims of Torture, a day commemorated every year worldwide on 26 June, the United Nations in Iraq expresses solidarity with all victims of torture in Iraq and reaffirms the inalienable right of all men and women to live free of the fear of torture and stresses the need to end impunity of the perpetrators.


To date, 147 States ratified the Convention  against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and 45 UN Member States, including Iraq, are yet to ratify this landmark Convention.

“Iraq has come a long way in recognizing human rights as a priority for building a democratic State where human dignity is preserved and protected but there is yet much more to be done. I urge the Government of Iraq to ratify this important United Nations Convention in the nearest future and commit to its principles” said Mr. Ad Melkert, the Special Representative of the United Nations Secretary-General in Iraq.

The Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT) was adopted on 10 December 1984 by the UN General Assembly (Resolution 39/46) and entered into force on 26 June 1987. The Convention was an important step to acknowledge that torture, and all forms of inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, are absolutely and universally illegal.  The Convention obliges States to make torture a crime and to prosecute and punish those guilty of it. It notes explicitly that neither higher orders nor exceptional circumstances can justify torture.

Mr. Melkert called on the Government of Iraq to intensify monitoring and investigating allegations of ill-treatment and torture of detainees and prisoners. 
He also called on the Government to ensure that those responsible are held accountable to the fullest extent of the law.

Last modified on Saturday, 26 June 2010 03:00

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