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Dignity and Justice for Detainees week 

The inhuman and degrading treatment of people in detention is an insult to human dignity. The torture of individuals in custody is an affront to all mankind.

As part of the commemoration of the 60th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights calls on all partners to pay special attention to the civil, cultural, economic, political and social rights of persons deprived of their liberty in prisons and other places of detention.

The High Commissioner has proposed that the week of 6 – 12 October 2008 be designated as Dignity and Justice for Detainees Week.

The main objectives of this initiative are to:

The High Commissioner directs her appeal on behalf of detainees to the following national and international partners:

All partners are encouraged to adopt a wide perspective on detention in order to address the plight of especially vulnerable groups.

They should look, in particular, at the situation of women and girls, children, people with disabilities, and migrants (including refugees and asylum seekers) deprived of their liberty.
(Please see the accompanying information notes on these thematic areas.)

Partners are invited to decide, based on their expertise and conditions in the country of operations, which general or thematic areas they wish to concentrate on.

While the proposed Dignity and Justice in Detention Week will serve to draw the spotlight onto detention, sustained improvements in the conditions of detainees will require action before the week begins and after it. The following events and others like them could serve to anchor activities in support of the initiative in 2008: