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Urgent appeals


The Special Rapporteur will act upon receiving credible information suggesting that an individual or a group of individuals is at risk of torture at the hands, consent, or acquiescence of public officials.

Without drawing any conclusions as to the facts of the case, the Special Rapporteur will send a letter to the Minister of Foreign Affairs of the country concerned, urging the Government to ensure the physical and mental integrity of the person(s).

The Special Rapporteur also takes action when persons are feared to be at risk of:

  • corporal punishment;
  • means of restraint contrary to international standards;
  • prolonged incommunicado detention;
  • solitary confinement;
  • "torturous" conditions of detention;
  • the denial of medical treatment and adequate nutrition;
  • imminent deportation to a country where there is a risk of torture, and
  • the threatened use or excessive use of force by law enforcement officials.

Urgent appeals are also transmitted concerning the enactment of legislation that will allegedly undermine the prohibition of torture (e.g. providing impunity for acts of torture).

Model questionnaire

Urgent appeals' address:

Special Rapporteur on Torture
c/o Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights
United Nations Office at Geneva
CH-1211 Geneva 10
Switzerland

E-mail: urgent-action@ohchr.org