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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 Raises Ongoing Concerns about torture for UN Committee Against Torture Review of Turkey
Thursday, 04 November 2010 15:23

Today sees the end of the 2-day review of Turkey’s 3rd periodic report on its implementation of the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CAT), which is taking place as part of the 45th session of the UN Committee Against Torture in Geneva, Switzerland running from the 1-19th November 2010. Each of the 146 states that have ratified CAT is obliged to submit a report to the Committee every 4 years. These reports, along with submissions from other stakeholders such as NGOs and civil society representatives, inform the Committee’s assessment of each state’s compliance with CAT and help determine its concerns and recommendations to these states.

In preparation for the review, KHRP submitted a report to the Committee that explains in detail the concerns regarding the continuous violations of the Convention in Turkey. The report highlights Turkey’s failure to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture (OPCAT) which would allow the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment the right to visit all places of detention in Turkey and examine the treatment of people held there. Turkey has made changes to its legislative programme, however, its Kurdish citizens still disproportionately suffer from torture and mistreatment.  Under Turkey’s draconian anti-terror laws, human rights defenders and vulnerable groups such as children, immigrants and women also increasingly suffer from violations of the Convention. KHRP’s report shows that investigations into torture allegations are often futile as a result of the culture of impunity that veils the Turkish criminal justice system.

KHRP’s Chief Executive said “As our report shows, there are sadly still many instances of torture and ill-treatment taking place in Turkey and little evidence of support, redress, or even acknowledgment for those who have suffered. KHRP strongly urges the Committee to take this report into account during the review, and hopes that the Turkish Government will take this opportunity to improve its human rights record by eliminating practices of torture and other inhuman or degrading treatment wherever they are found.”

KHRP’s submission to the UN CAT on Turkey is available to download from our website here, and more information on the 45th session of the UN Committee Against Torture can be found on the website for the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights here.