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rep torture

 

International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

TORTURE

 IN THE UNITED ARAB EMIRATES

Geneva, June 2016

 

Political context of the United Arab Emirates

United Arab Emirate’s violations of human rights and fundamental freedoms that are guaranteed under International covenants and declarations have grossly increased to include the prosecution and the trial of innocent dissidents and activists especially after the wave of Arab revolutions which formed the so-called "Arab Spring", during which the slogans of freedom, dignity and social justice have raised and emerged.

Indeed, Emirati authorities have arrested a number of human rights activists following their signature to the reform petition that was addressed to the rulers of UAE calling for the establishment of a solid and rational government and the reinforcing of the basic Rights and Freedoms.

On 3 March, 2011, the signatories of the well-known petition for reforms expressed their longings and aspirations for the election of the members of the Federal National Council by all citizens, as it is the case of democratic countries around the world and called for the modification of the constitutional articles related to the Federal National Council in order to ensure legislative and monitoring powers.

Some of the undersigned persons, including academics, lawyers, experts and women were stripped out their nationality and were subject to arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance and unfair trials which violated their right to a proper defense.

They were also exposed to torture and other ill and degrading treatment, a fact that was neglected by Emirati authorities, who have intentionally delayed the detainees’ trial in breach to the right to obtain without delay a public and fair trial.

Families of the detainees have also faced many rights’ violations including their right to travel, to visit their sons in prison and to get a job and many of them were stripped out of their nationality and turned into stateless persons or what is known as “Al Bidoon” in addition to being denied the right to a judicial and administrative appeal against the decision.

In fact, AlSiddiq family were summoned to the police station and stripped out of their official documents and thus becoming foreigners after being Emirati citizens.

Indeed, Emirati authorities have deliberately tried dissidents and human rights activists on fabricated and baseless charges and crimes under inaccurate and repressing laws such as the Federal Law No. 2 of 2003 on the State Security Service, the Federal Decree No. 5 of 2012 on combating cyber-crimes information and the Federal law No. 7 of 2014 on combating terrorist crimes which are laws that do not respect the principle of the Rule of Law and violate the principle of legality of offenses and penalties.

The legal framework of torture in the United Arab Emirates

 

1 Legislative license of torture and ill-treatment

The United Arab Emirates has reinforced, through its constitutional articles, the prohibition of torture (Article 26 of the Constitution "No one shall be subjected to torture or degrading treatment") and the protection of the physical and moral sanctity (Article 28: "to harm the accused physically or mentally”).

However, constitutionalizing the prohibition of torture and degrading treatment and criminalizing the fact of harming the accused persons physically and morally did not urge the authorities of the United Arab Emirates for the early accession to the Convention against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in December 1984. Indeed, it has only become member of the Torture Convention on 19 July 2012 and refuses till today to join the Optional Protocol on the Convention against Torture.

 

2 UAE's refusal to join the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture 

The UAE has belatedly ratified the Convention against Torture on 19 July 2012 after it has pledged to do so in front of the Human Rights Council back in 2008, but it did not accept, until today, to join the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, which was adopted by the United Nations General Assembly in December 18, 2002 and entered into force in June 22, 2006 to create the Subcommittee on prevention of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment (“SPT”) that receives and examines reports sent by individuals who are subject to legal jurisdiction and claiming to be victims of right’s violation. Therefore, the “SPT” Committee examines these reports, in accordance with the principles of confidentiality, impartiality, non-selectivity, universality and objectivity.

The Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture has also called on countries to set national mechanisms for the prevention of torture in order to examine, on a regular basis, the treatment of the accused in places of detention as defined in Article 4, in order to carry out, if necessary, their protection from torture and cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. The Protocol has also made recommendations to relevant authorities to improve the treatment and conditions of the persons deprived of their liberty and to prevent torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment by taking into account the relevant standards set by the United Nations and presenting suggestions and observations concerning the existing legislation.

The UAE refused to join The Optional Protocol on the Convention against Torture in order to not be obliged to receive the Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture that will investigate the complaints of torture and ill-treatment, and to not be bound by the Article 17, to set a national mechanism to prevent torture within a period of up to one year from the joining date.

 

3 The definition of torture in the UAE does not match with the one of the Convention against Torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

The UAE has merely criminalized and punished any officer who used torture, force or threat against the accused or the witness in order to get him to confess to a crime, to make a statement or to conceal a thing as part of Chapter 242 of the Emirati Penal Code.

Article I of the Convention against Torture has confirmed that torture means:

“Any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or a third person information or a confession, punishing him for an act he or a third person has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating or coercing him or a third person, or for any reason based on discrimination of any kind, when such pain or suffering is inflicted by or at the instigation of or with the consent or acquiescence of a public official or other person acting in an official capacity.”

Indeed, the difference between the Emirati Penal Code’s definition of crime and torture and that of the articles of the Convention against Torture indicates the deliberate decision of UAE to narrow the definition to one that does not grasp all the UN elements and lacks the principle of responsibility which would lead to impunity from accountability and punishment for all the torturers and thus provide the safe havens for them.

Despite the intervention of the UAE Constitution, under the Articles 26 and 28 for the prohibition of torture and the prevention of the physical and moral abuse against the accused, Emirati laws are still lacking the Body of Principles for the prohibition of torture and ill-treatment. 

 

4 The Body of Principles for the prohibition of torture and ill-treatment

- To not ignore the claims of torture over time.

- Ban on invoking superior orders to justify torture and ill-treatment or to not protest the duty of obedience to subordinate to his boss in accordance with Article 2 of the Convention against Torture.

- The exclusion of statements or confessions showing that they were extracted under torture in accordance with Article 15 of the Convention against Torture.

- The right of a victim of torture or of his dependants in case of death in full redress and reparation for the harm or damage to his family in accordance with Article 14 of the Convention against Torture.

 

5 The absence of a law that protects victims of torture and ill-treatment and provides all the rights guaranteed for them, including the protection and if necessary the change of residence and identity

Moreover, it is important to note that Emirati authorities’ refusal to join the two international covenants and the main conventions demonstrates the absence of the will of UAE rulers to provide all the necessary guarantees to prevent torture and to protect the personal dignity and security of the detainees.

 

6 United Arab Emirates’ unwillingness and rejection to join the two UN covenants represents a threat to the physical and psychological safety of the detainees

UAE did not join:

  • The International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights in which the article 7 emphasized on the fact that “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. In particular, no one shall be subjected without his free consent to medical or scientific experimentation. «It is important to note that the number of the States that have acceded to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights is 168.
  • International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.
  • Body of Principles for the Protection of All Persons under Any Form of Detention or Imprisonment.

 

7 Absence of a national human rights body in accordance with the Paris Principles for the prevention of torture

The United Arab Emirates has already pledged during the Universal Periodic Review before the Human Rights Council in 2013 to set a National Commission for Human Rights in accordance with the requirements of the Paris Principles, however, it did not fulfill its promise and till today. We do not find in the UAE an independent national human rights institution, that has high powers and committed to protect and promote human rights and monitor all of the violations as well as to track, control and visit places of detention and abuse and to receive complaints and present them to competent authorities and help the complainants to take the right procedures.

It is known that national human rights institutions that are compatible with the Paris Principles play a crucial role in promoting and monitoring the effective implementation of international human rights standards at a national level and in ensuring the appropriate treatment for the detainees that protects their dignity and humanity and prevents the practice of torture and ill-treatment.

 

The practice of torture and ill-treatment in Emirati prisons: Torture inquests and pain answers

International human rights covenants, conventions and declarations have all agreed on the absolute prohibition of torture during war and peace time, and that this right is a solid right in international law.

The Article 2(2) of the Convention against Torture confirmed that:

“No exceptional circumstances whatsoever, whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture”.

Despite UAE’s ratification of the Convention against Torture, the human rights situation in the country is not compatible with this Convention and other international conventions, covenants or declarations that prevent the violation of the physical and psychological sanctity of the detainees and defend their personal dignity and safety.

Indeed, the International Centre for Justice and Human Rights in Geneva has received credible and frequent information, from inside and outside the UAE, stating that the detainees, including dissidents and human rights activists, were exposed to torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment by the prison authorities.

In fact, Emirati authorities have deliberately tortured and mistreated the detainees of the "UAE 5” and “UAE 94” Groups and violated their basic rights after convicting them on baseless and fabricated charges such as seeking to overthrow the government and threatening state security in addition to the fact that one of them was arrested because of his peaceful Tweets.

The ICJHR has already revealed some of the names of persons who have tortured and mistreated the detainees including a police officer named Ahmed Abdullah who chained the prisoners’ hands and legs from behind and made them with their hands bound, sit in the prison yard at noon under the scorching sun, which hurt and harmed them with marks in their hands and legs. Afterwards, he searched the luggage of the detainees, accompanied by the rest of the guards, and purposely started to scatter the prisoners’ luggage, throw chairs, and squeeze shampoo and toothpaste on room floors in front of them.

 

1 Methods of torture practiced by Emirati authorities on dissidents and human rights activists

  • Electrocution
  • Beatings with sticks
  • Suspension by the wrists or ankles
  • Denailing
  • Pelage
  • Throwing insects
  • Immersion in cold water in front of a fan
  • Putting the detainee in a coffin for long hours
  • Solitary confinement in very narrow and dark cells
  • Threat of using the electric chair
  • Confiscating the detainees’ eyeglasses which weakened their eyesight
  • Sleep deprivation
  • Denial of exposure to the sun and air for months
  • Standing on one leg during the investigation
  • Putting prisoners under the sun for long hours
  • Erosion and stripping detainees of all their clothes
  • Cursing and humiliation
  • Preventing detainees from making their religious practices such as fast and prayers

Indeed, detainees and human rights activists have secretly leaked letters proving their exposure to all forms of torture, humiliation and ill-treatment which caused them physical and moral damages. Among these letters, we find those of the detainees of the well-known case of the “UAE 94” including letters of Dr. Ahmed Yousef Al Zaabi, Ali Abdullah Mahdi Saleh, Abdul Rahim Zaanouni, Abdul Rahim Abdul, Abdeslam Marzouki and Abdullah Abdul-Qader Al-Hajri who have enumerated the torture and abuse methods that Emirati authorities have exercised on them.

Torture affects the academic lawyer and human rights activist, Dr. Mohammed Al-Roken.

Indeed, when Dr. Mohammed Al-Roken was charged of defending himself and other detainees, he affirmed that “it was hard for them to beg for soap under the bathroom door while being uncovered and blindfolded”.

Torture affects economic expert, Dr. Nasser bin Ghaith.

Dr. Nasser bin Ghaith was arrested because of his peaceful activities on Twitter including posts that were considered by Emirati authorities as disrespectful and humiliating such as insulting a foreign country, spreading false news about the UAE rulers and policies and collaborating with outlawed parties such as AL-Islah association.

Moreover, Dr. Nasser bin Ghaith was subjected to torture and humiliation proceedings and he has stayed for months in secret detention in addition to being denied the right to contact his lawyer and family.

The UAE authorities have deliberately transferred Dr. Nasser bin Ghaith to Al-Sader Jail one of the dirtiest and notorious jails in the UAE mainly used for expats who are set for deportation.

Despite Dr. Bin Ghaith complained to the court about his exposure to torture and his deprivation from meeting his lawyer and family, nothing has changed and the judge paid no heed into his claims.

Torture and ill-treatment affects Mohammed Al-Aradi.

Mohammed Al-Aradi (51 years), a Libyan-Canadian who has been living in the UAE for 23 years, was arrested in Dubai in August 28, 2014 by the security forces who blindfolded and chained him to a four-wheel vehicle to take him then to a detention centre and put him in a cell with no windows that measured about 3 m × 3 meters.

Mohammed Al-Aradi spent more than 100 days in detention and was exposed to multiple interrogation sessions during the first weeks, and was blindfolded the entire time. Indeed, he was beaten all over his body, immersed with cold water and forced to continuously stand with no rest for several days in addition to being threatened with rape and being tied to an electric chair; and in the meantime, he was listening to the voices of the other tortured detainees including his brother Salim who was screaming.

On December 25, Emirati authorities released Mohammed Al-Aradi with no charge and during his detention period, he was not able to see a lawyer or to receive a consular assistance from the Libyan Embassy.

Torture and ill-treatment affects Kamal Al-Darat.

Kamal Al-Darat holds the Libyan and American citizenship, he was arrested by the state security of the United Arab Emirates and was brought to a secret location and prevented from contacting his family and lawyer and was subjected to torture and ill-treatment such as beatings, insults, and threats.

As a result, Al-Darat lost a lot of his hair and weight and his back problems have enormously increased since he already has a serious problem in his spine.

Torture affects British people.

Three British citizens were arrested in the UAE back in 2013 while they were on holiday in Dubai on charges of possessing cannabinoids and were exposed to torture and ill-treatment. The accused were: Grant Cameron, Suneet Jeerh and karl Williams.

During seven months of detention, the three young men were subjected to electric shocks and beatings in addition to the fact that the "pistols" of the Emirati security officers were pointed straight to their heads. In fact, they were held without trial and were forced to sign documents in Arabic, a language none of them understood.

Ahmad Zeidan, 22, a student from Berkshire and Hassanein Ali, 34, from London, have also reported that the authorities of the United Arab Emirates have arrested them in May on charges of drug possession and that they were exposed to erosion and rape threat.

Indeed, press reports have proved the exposure of the foreign detainees in the UAE to torture in a place called the "boxing ring".

 

2 Degrading treatment continues to include families of the detainees

Degrading treatment has reached families of the detainees who were left at the prison gates for long hours under the scorching sun and searched in a humiliating way in clear violation of the Convention against Torture and the Principles on Detention stating by the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners, and rules.

The ICJHR has highly denounced, through its reports and movements, the deliberate neglect of Emirati authorities towards the dignity of the families of detainees.

 

3 International reports proving the systematic practice of torture and ill-treatment committed by the UAE authorities

The ICJHR has no doubt about the existence of torture and inhuman punishment and treatment in the UAE and the deliberate practice of torture against the detainees and their families, a fact that was confirmed by many reports that have documented the torture and the mistreatment in the United Arab Emirates including the report of the Former Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers, Ms. Gabriela Knaul which stated, in page 12, paragraph 52, that:

“During her visit, the Special Rapporteur received credible information and evidence that many of the individuals who were arrested without a warrant and taken to unofficial places of detention were also subjected to torture or other forms of ill-treatment, including in order to extract confessions of guilt or testimonies against other detainees. Consistent testimonies of the following torture and ill-treatment were received: deprivation of daylight; exposure to bright electric light 24 hours a day; being blindfolded and threatened; being kept in very small cells without windows or a toilet; being forced to ask permission and being forced to strip in order to go to the toilet; exposure to extreme temperatures; beatings; extraction of fingernails and plucking of beards; being drugged; sexual assaults and threats thereof; and insults.”

The reports of Amnesty International, Human Rights Watch and other UN organizations have also confirmed the presence of the torture and ill-treatment procedures against Emirati activists and foreigners.

 

4 Depriving victims of torture of their right to complain and to prove their exposure to torture

 The UAE has been arresting dissidents and human rights activists in order to interrogate them and put them in secret detention places as well as to humiliate their dignity.

Indeed, Emirati authorities are keeping all of the detention centres secret and unknown, and are blindfolding the detainees so they won’t be able to recognize their location, which makes them in a position of enforced disappearances and increases the risk of being subjected to torture.

According to the article 2 of the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, the term means: 

““Enforced disappearance” is considered to be the arrest, detention, abduction or any other form of deprivation of liberty by agents of the State or by persons or groups of persons acting with the authorization, support or acquiescence of the State, followed by a refusal to acknowledge the deprivation of liberty or by concealment of the fate or whereabouts of the disappeared person, which place such a person outside the protection of the law.”

The ICJHR has already issued several statements concerning the forcibly disappeared persons who were kept in secret detention in the UAE including the report on Mozah Al-Abdoulli’s siblings who are still kept in secret places.

In fact, Emirati authorities have denied the detainees from:

  • Their right to inform their families about their arrest, and the right to family’s visits and calls.
  • The right to get an immediate access to a legal counsel and to privately consult him.
  • The right to contact a doctor in the request for a medical examination.

Indeed, this denial of rights represents a serious violation of a country’s commitment to keeping detainees in an officially recognized places and ensuring that the names of the persons responsible for their detention will be easily found and a violation to the detainees’ right of proving the time and place of interrogations and contacting their lawyers and family members.

The Body of Principles for the Protection of All Persons under Any Form of Detention or Imprisonment, endorsed by the United Nations General Assembly in December 9, 1988, has addressed all the extensive rights of the detainees.

Indeed, detainees and human rights activists in the UAE have found themselves deprived of all rights approved by the United Nations; some of them have remained in secret detention centres for months in solitary confinement without being able to contact their family or lawyer and were also denied the right to treatment after being tortured and prevented from complaining and submitting grievances in addition to the fact that families of the detainees were always neglected by the authorities’ whenever they asked about the whereabouts of their sons.

Despite the international claims of the human rights organizations of disclosing the names of all detention places, the UAE still refuses to accept the visit of human rights organizations and associations that will inspect the living conditions of the prisoners and verify their conformity with the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners.

Despite the UAE’s pledge, during the UPR report to the Human Rights Council in 2013, to strengthen its cooperation with international human rights mechanisms, however, until today, the UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment is not allowed to enter the country in clear breach of the commitments and pledges made by the United Arab Emirates before the Human Rights Council.

UAE’s negativity in dealing with international correspondence is a proof to its deliberate intention to hide all the committed abuses against dissidents and human rights activists.

 

5 Emirati authorities’ continuous rejection of the formation of a commission of inquiry into torture claims

Despite the victims of torture’s complaints and grievances to the authorities of the United Arab Emirates as being exposed to violations that affected their physical and moral sanctity, however, Emirati authorities failed to investigate the credibility of these torture allegations and did not give the opportunity for the detainees to reform and repair the damage that they have been subject to.

Indeed, the Convention against Torture and the Istanbul Protocol confirmed that States are obliged to investigate into the allegations of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading punishment in accordance of the paragraph 79 of the Protocol Istanbul:

“States must ensure that complaints and reports of torture or ill-treatment are promptly and effectively investigated. Even in the absence of an express complaint, an investigation should be undertaken if there are other indications that torture or ill-treatment might have occurred. The investigators, who shall be independent of the suspected perpetrators and the agency they serve, must be competent and impartial. They must have access to or be empowered to commission investigations by impartial medical or other experts. The methods used to carry out these investigations must meet the highest professional standards, and the findings must be made public.”

The Istanbul Protocol has also emphasized on the basic principles of any serious investigation into allegations of torture: 

  • Competence, expertise and specialization
  • Integrity
  • Rapidity
  • Independence and impartiality

The Commission subsequently has to issue a public report within a reasonable period of time that shall include information on:

  • The scope of the investigation and the Commission's jurisdiction
  • The procedures and methods used in the evaluation of the evidence
  • List of the names, ages and sex of each of the persons who gave testimonies except for those who want to keep their identity unknown or those who gave their testimony in secret sessions
  • The Statement of the documents received by the Commission as evidence
  • Specific events that have occurred
  • The evidence upon which the events proved to occur
  • The Act adopted by the Commission
  • The findings of the Commission based on the applicable law and the established facts
  • Recommendations based of the commission’s findings

However, Emirati citizens and human rights defenders in particular, have never heard about the formation of an independent and impartial inquiry commission with professionalism and high efficiency to investigate into the crimes of torture and other ill-treatment.

In fact, UAE authorities have never taken disciplinary or dismissal action or judicial proceedings against the officers who have tortured the detainees.

Emirati citizens also did not hear about the authorities of the United Arab Emirates’ care towards the victims of torture and the fact of responding to their needs and giving them full redress and compensation proceedings, including financial compensation and providing the appropriate means for medical care and rehabilitation.

The UAE authorities did not help the organizations that are defending the victims of torture, to get and exchange information.

 

Judicial neglect of the allegations of torture and ill-treatment: Impunity and judicial complicity

Judges have a special role in the protection of the citizens' rights and fundamental freedoms according to the United Nations Basic Principles on the independence of the judiciary in addition to being members of the General Prosecutor's Office and having a moral duty in investigating the torture crimes committed by public officers and prosecuting the perpetrators according to the Article 15 of the United Nations guidelines.

However, the United Arab Emirates does not have a trust-worthy judiciary that works according to the principles of the United Nations including the principles of independence, impartiality and integrity and does not provide all fair trial guarantees.

Indeed, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers has warned in her report following her visit to the United Arab Emirates on January 27 until February 5 of 2014, about the control of the executive branch over the judiciary and the exercised pressure by the state security apparatus on judges and  the appointment of judges by presidential decree in the absence of a clear, objective and transparent criteria in the selection of judges particularly with regard to qualifications, integrity, ability and efficiency.

The UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers has also examined the absence of fair trial guarantees by the State Security Chamber of the Federal Supreme Court where judgments are final without any appeal in clear violation of the principle of litigation on two levels.

Indeed, the ICJHR knows that such a court will not present a serious investigation about the torture claims and will not disclose the torturers names in accordance to the principle of command responsibility in addition to the fact that it will not shed deterrent penalties on the culprits or ensure reparation for damage to the victims.

Activists and jurists have complained to the State Security Chamber of the Federal Supreme Court about the indifference and the refusal of Emirati judiciary to investigate their allegations as being subjected to torture and other ill-treatment and to call doctors in order to examine the victims and preview the effects of torture and to ensure the protection of victims of torture and witnesses from all threat or intimidation.

Indeed, instead of excluding the confessions extracted under torture and other ill-treatment in accordance with the requirements of the Convention against Torture, on the contrary, such defective confessions were sufficient to convict the accused.

The public prosecutor has done nothing to address the complaints of the detainees as being subjected to torture and ill-treatment and did not respect the principle of the inadmissibility of taking the accused persons and beginning the investigation procedure by the party who accused him in accordance with the Convention against Torture and the Istanbul Protocol to investigate and document cases of torture and inhuman treatment.

In fact, Judges did not move to the detention centres without prior notice and have conducted inspections and searches and confiscated what was necessary in order to adjudicate complaints and reports of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading punishment.

Emirati authorities did not enact any judicial provisions condemning the officers who have committed torture crimes and did not fine them for the benefit of victims of torture and did not make judgments acquitting the accused after proving their innocence.

 

Recommendation

Therefore, regarding these atrocious human rights’ violations committed by the United Arab Emirates, the International Centre for Justice and Human Rights in Geneva urges the authorities to: 

  1. Release without delay all the prisoners of conscience in the United Arab Emirates who were arrested because of their beliefs or opinions that they had peacefully expressed calling for reform in conformity with international human rights standards
  2. Open a fast and serious investigation leading by an independent body regarding the allegations of torture and ill-treatment in accordance with the requirements of the Convention against Torture and the obligations of the Istanbul Protocol and hold accountable all those involved in the violation of the physical and psychological integrity of the detainees and enable the victims of torture and ill-treatment of their right to appeal, redress and repair the damage they have been subject to and work on their  rehabilitation within the society
  3. Stop arresting dissidents and human rights activists and putting them in secret detention places, and preventing them from communicating with the outside world, as well as to stop keeping them in solitary confinement in clear violation of international human rights principles that guarantee liberty and security of person
  4. Establish a national human rights institution in accordance with the Principles relating to the Status of National Institutions (The Paris Principles)
  5. Edit and revise the definition of the crime of torture contained within the UAE Penal Code in order to be able to grasp all the elements of the UN definition of torture that are agreed by the Convention against Torture
  6. Reinforce the principle of the separation of powers and take concrete measures to strengthen the independence of the judiciary and to provide all fair trial guarantees for the detainees, including, in particular, the right to meet a counsel in private and to the presumption of innocence and the exclusion of confessions extracted under torture and other ill and degrading treatment
  7. Ratify the Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and its two Optional Protocols, the Optional Protocol on the Convention against Torture and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance

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