with the United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment

  • From March 9 – 11, 2015, the Special Rapporteur on Torture, Juan E. Méndez participated in activities at the Twenty-Eight Session for he United Nations Human Rights Council. During the Session, he addressed the Council to present his latest activities and country-specific and thematic reports and conduct an interactive dialogue with State Delegations and NGOs. Highlights included the presentation of his latest thematic report on juveniles deprived of liberty, reports on his 2014 missions to Mexico and The Gambia, and on his 2014 follow-up missions to Tunisia and Tajikistan. The Special Rapporteur also held a press conference and participate in several side-events addressing a diverse array of human rights issues, including the human rights situation at Guantanamo Bay and accountability for torture in the United States, the death penalty in international law, and human rights in Sri Lanka. To learn more about the activities and access relevant documentation and links, please click on the adjacent image.

  • Welcome to the Anti-Torture Initiative (ATI), a project of the Center for Human Rights & Humanitarian Law at American University Washington College of Law! We work to expand the strategies of UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment Juan E. Mendez (SRT) in furtherance of his mandate. Please have a look at our website to learn more about how we help support, monitor, and assess implementation of the SRT’s recommendations, and provide a multi-dynamic model for effective thematic and country-specific follow-up. Please click on the adjacent image to read our latest news!

  • Between Monday, October 20 and Wednesday, October 22, 2014, Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez attended the 69th Session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA), held a press conference, and participated in thematic side-events alongside UN colleagues, State delegates, and civil society partners in New York City. During the Session, the Special Rapporteur presented his latest thematic report on the role of forensic and medical sciences in the investigation and prevention of torture and other ill-treatment, and engaged in an interactive dialogue on his recent activities and other topics related to his mandate. To learn more about the Special Rapporteur's week at the General Assembly and to access document, videos, and other media, please click on the adjacent image.

  • Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez received prestigious Letelier-Moffitt Human Rights Award from the Institute for Policy Studies in Washington, D.C. The award celebrates human rights defenders in the United States and the Americas. This year, Professor Méndez was honored for his work as a jurist and human rights activist, and for his work as the United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture. The award was presented by Rev. William Wipfler and Mr. John Hutchinson, who led advocacy efforts in 1977 to have Professor Méndez declared a prisoner of conscience and released from Argentine junta’s notorious Unit 9 prison, where he was detained because of his defense, as a lawyer, of political prisoners threatened by torture and arbitrary arrest in the 1970s. Special Rapporteur Méndez and this year’s other awardees were congratulated by Chilean President Michelle Bachelet in a special video message, and featured in media outlets including the Washington Post. The recipients of this year’s domestic and international awards are Robin Reineke from the Colibrí Center for Human Rights, and the Mesoamerican Initiative of Human Rights Defenders. For more information and multimedia, please click on the adjacent image.

UN experts welcome Malaysian, Indonesian and Thai leaders’ decision not to push back migrants and asylum seekers

UN experts welcome Malaysian, Indonesian and Thai leaders’ decision not to push back migrants and asylum seekers

May 21, 2015 – Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez and other independent UN human rights experts have welcomed the Malaysian, Indonesian and Thai leaders’ decision not to push back migrants and asylum seekers arriving in their territorial waters as “an important and welcome step forward in recognition of the need to protect the rightContinue Reading

UN expert calls for adoption of a minimum set of fundamental human rights for those in detention

UN expert calls for adoption of a minimum set of fundamental human rights for those in detention

May 18, 2015 – Today, United Nations Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez called for the adoption of the revised Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, proposed for adoption as the “Mandela Rules,” in an open letter to the UN Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice. The Rules are being consideredContinue Reading

International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia: Discriminated and Made Vulnerable: Young LGBT and Intersex People Need Recognition and Protection of Their Rights

International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia: Discriminated and Made Vulnerable: Young LGBT and Intersex People Need Recognition and Protection of Their Rights

May 13, 2015 – Speaking ahead of the International Day against Homophobia, Biphobia and Transphobia, Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez and other United Nations and international human rights experts from regional organizations have called for an end to discrimination and violence against lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) and intersex young people and children,Continue Reading

Paraguay Has Failed to Protect A 10-year Old Girl Child Who Became Pregnant After Being Raped, Say UN Experts

Paraguay Has Failed to Protect A 10-year Old Girl Child Who Became Pregnant After Being Raped, Say UN Experts

May 11, 2015 – Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez and other UN human rights experts have said that the Government of Paraguay has failed to protect the rights of a 10-year old girl child who became pregnant after repeated sexual abuse at the hands of a close relative, by refusing her access to treatmentsContinue Reading