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UN torture prevention body to visit Liberia

GENEVA (25 October 2018) – The United Nations Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT) is set to carry out its second visit to Liberia from October 29 to November 2 to explore the treatment of people deprived of their liberty and the safeguards in place for their protection against torture and ill-treatment.

The four-member delegation will meet government officials and hold discussions with relevant ministries, as well as meeting with civil society organisations. Their talks in Monrovia will focus on advising and assisting the Liberian authorities regarding the measures they must take to be in compliance with the obligations contained in the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture (OPCAT), which Liberia ratified in 2004.

The SPT will also hold discussions on the establishment of an independent National Preventive Mechanism — a body which the OPCAT requires be established and which must have the authority and capacity to undertake preventive visits to any place where it believes persons may be deprived of their liberty, in order to help prevent torture or ill-treatment. The SPT will itself be visiting places of detention in the course of its visit.

“This is our second visit to Liberia since it ratified the OPCAT. We will be exploring what has been done to implement the recommendations we made following our first visit in 2010. We will also be considering what further steps the country needs to take to effectively prevent torture and ill-treatment of people held in detention, and so meet its OPCAT obligations, including the establishment of a national independent body to monitor all places of detention,” said Sir Malcolm Evans, who will head the delegation.

The SPT delegation will be composed of Sir Malcolm Evans (United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland), Ms Mari Amos (Estonia), Ms Marija Definis-Gojanovic (Croatia), and Mr. Satyabhooshun Gupt Domah (Mauritius).

ENDS

For media inquiries or for more information, please contact:
In Monrovia: Armen Avetisyan, +41 79 444 3707 / aavetisyan@ohchr.org 
In Geneva: Julia Gronnevet, +41 (0) 22 917 9310 / jgronnevet@ohchr.org

Background 

The Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture monitors States parties’ adherence to the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture which to date been ratified by 88 countries. The Committee is made up of 25 members who are independent human rights experts drawn from around the world, who serve in their personal capacity and not as representatives of States parties. The SPT has a mandate to undertake visits to States parties, during the course of which it may visit any place where persons may be deprived of their liberty. 

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