with the United Nations Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment
Special Rapporteur regrets postponement of country visit by Government of Turkey

Special Rapporteur regrets postponement of country visit by Government of Turkey

October 1, 2016 – Special Rapportuer on Torture Juan E Méndez has expressed deep disappointment with the Turkish government’s decision to postpone his visit to the country, which was scheduled to begin on 10 October. “While I understand that the developments in Turkey during the last months demand the government’s fullest attention, I believe that postponing my visit at this late stage sends the wrong message,” the Special Rapporteur stated. “In light of the thousands of arrests made following the failed coup-attempt of 15 July 2016, and the allegations of severe overcrowding and poor conditions in many detention centres throughout the country, my visit is of utmost importance,” he continued.

The Special Rapporteur stressed that independent monitoring is a crucial safeguard against ill-treatment and torture, explaining that due to the sensitivity of his mandate, there will never be a perfect time for a visit. He further stressed that even in a state of emergency, safeguards against torture and ill-treatment and other fundamental human rights must remain in place, and conveyed to the Turkish Government his understanding that the invitation for a fact-finding visit is extended to his successor.

To read the press release in full, please visit the OHCHR website

Special Rapporteur calls on States across the world to repeal restrictive abortion laws

Special Rapporteur calls on States across the world to repeal restrictive abortion laws

September 29, 2016 – Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez and other independent United Nations Human Rights experts called on States across the world to repeal restrictive #abortion laws and policies, as well as all punitive measures and discriminatory barriers to access safe reproductive health services. The experts explained that in the twenty-first century unsafe abortion is oneContinue Reading

Special Rapporteur discusses importance of incorporating gender perspective in regards to torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment

Special Rapporteur discusses importance of incorporating gender perspective in regards to torture and cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment

September 28, 2016 – Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez participated in a high-level panel discussion on the integration of#GenderPerspectives in the work of the United Nations Human Rights Council. The Special Rapporteur discussed the importance of adopting a gender perspective in the work of his mandate, and provided an overview of his thematicContinue Reading

Special Rapporteur urges Pakistan authorities to halt the execution of a 50 year-old man with psychosocial disability

Special Rapporteur urges Pakistan authorities to halt the execution of a 50 year-old man with psychosocial disability

28 September 2016 — Yesterday, Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez, together with the Special Rapporteurs on extrajudicial, summary or arbitrary executions, the independence of judges and lawyers, and the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health, called for Pakistan authorities to halt the executionContinue Reading

Roundtable discussion of the progress and challenges regarding the prevention of torture in Kyrgyzstan

Roundtable discussion of the progress and challenges regarding the prevention of torture in Kyrgyzstan

September 20, 2016 – the Anti-Torture Initiative hosted a half-day Roundtable in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan, together with partners from the Open Society Foundations and the Golos Svobody, the National Coalition against Torture in Kyrgyzstan. More than 30 participants represented local civil society, international and regional organizations including the OSCE – The Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the European UnionContinue Reading

“Hay mucho que hacer todavía” dice el Relator Especial sobre la Tortura al Senado de la República de México

“Hay mucho que hacer todavía” dice el Relator Especial sobre la Tortura al Senado de la República de México

20 de Abril de 2016- “Hay mucho que hacer todavía” así concluye la visita del Relator Especial sobre la Tortura y Otros Tratos o Penas Crueles, Juan E. Mendez al Senado de la República de México para discutir al respecto del proyecto de Ley en contra de la tortura. El 18 de Abril de 2016 elContinue Reading

Tackling the world drug problem: UN Experts urge States to adopt Human Rights approach

Tackling the world drug problem: UN Experts urge States to adopt Human Rights approach

April 18, 2016 – Ahead of the UN General Assembly Special Session on the World Drug Problem scheduled to start tomorrow in New York and continue through April 21, several UN experts expressed concerns over the growing abuses coming from the international war on drugs and encouraged those attending to remember the human rights obligationsContinue Reading

DC Book Launch: “Hell is a very small place: voices from solitary confinement”

DC Book Launch: “Hell is a very small place: voices from solitary confinement”

April 14, 2016 – The UN Special Rapporteur on Torture has called the use of solitary confinement cruel and unusual punishment that is often tantamount to torture. Yesterday marked the DC launch of “Hell Is a Very Small Place: Voices from Solitary Confinement,” a new book that provides firsthand accounts from 16 current and formerly incarceratedContinue Reading

Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez was featured panelist at Human Rights Center 25th anniversary celebration

Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Mendez was featured panelist at Human Rights Center 25th anniversary celebration

April 12, 2016 – The Center for Human Rights and Humanitarian Law at American University Washington College of Law celebrated 25 years by hosting a human rights networking event and a day-long conference, featuring panel discussions on the core issue areas of the Center. Special Rapporteur Juan E. Mendez participated in the panel on enforcingContinue Reading

Boston University School of Public Health Dean’s Symposium Tackles Health Rights of Prisoners, the Public

Boston University School of Public Health Dean’s Symposium Tackles Health Rights of Prisoners, the Public

April 11, 2016 – Last week, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture Juan E. Méndez joined Dainius Pūras, Special Rapporteur on the right to health, at Boston University’s School of Public Health quarterly Dean’s Symposium to address Public Health and Human Rights.  Professor Méndez applauded the 2015 US Senate Intelligence Committee report, which was highly criticalContinue Reading