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Kurdish Human Rights Project: This is the legacy website of the Kurdish Human Rights Project, containing reports and news pertaining to human rights issues in the Kurdish Regions for 20 years.

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KHRP Highlights Widespread Human Rights Abuses Ahead of CAT Review of Syria
Friday, 30 April 2010 10:58

Next Tuesday 4 May 2010, the Committee against Torture will review Syria’s first periodic report on its implementation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT).

Ahead of this review, KHRP wishes to draw urgent attention to three key points: (i) the need for Syria to adapt its laws to establish a definition of the offence of torture; (ii) the need for Syria to properly enforce legislation aimed at preventing and punishing acts of torture; and (iii) the need for Syria to properly investigate allegations of torture against Syrian Kurds and to provide appropriate redress where it has been established that torture has occurred.

In its recent shadow report on Syria to the Committee, KHRP outlined historic and recent examples of torture of Kurds in Syria, and highlighted the fact that despite these abuses, no responsible parties have ever been disciplined or prosecuted, nor any victims compensated. As has also been repeatedly highlighted by KHRP in its urgent action appeals to various UN bodies, Syrian Kurds are among those most at risk of torture and ill-treatment. Syrian Kurds are stateless peoples and have long been targeted by the Syrian authorities and subjected to torture and ill-treatment, sometimes resulting in the victims being disabled or dying in custody.

Each of the 146 states that have ratified CAT is obliged to submit a report to the Committee every four years. These reports, along with submissions from other stakeholders such as NGOs and civil society representatives, inform the Committee’s assessments of each state’s compliance with CAT and help determine its concerns and recommendations to these states.

‘The torture of Syrian Kurds in detention remains a longstanding concern for KHRP’, said KHRP Chief Executive Kerim Yildiz. ‘Our shadow report challenges the Syrian Arab Republic’s official line on its record on torture, and aims to add to the pressure on Syria to implement measures to eradicate torture and safeguard minorities from its effects.’

KHRP’s submission to the UN CAT on Syria is available to download here.