World Organisation Against Torture

Created in 1985, the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT) is today the main coalition of international non-governmental organisations (NGO) fighting against torture, summary executions, enforced disappearances and all other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment. With 311 affiliated organisations in its SOS-Torture Network and many tens of thousands correspondents in every country, OMCT is the most important network of non-governmental organisations working for the protection and the promotion of human rights in the world. [Read more …]

Highlights

Côte d'Ivoire:  Conférence de presse conjointe MIDH / OMCT relative à la Consultation Nationale pour prévenir et éradiquer la torture et les mauvais traitements

December 15, 2014  |  Statements  |  Côte d'Ivoire

Brazil:  Global anti-torture movement recognizing truth commissions report and calls for reparation of victims

December 12, 2014  |   Urgent campaigns  |  Statements  |  Brazil

Tunisia:  De jeunes libyens et tunisiens disent NON aux violations des droits de l’homme à travers des évènements culturels et artistiques

December 12, 2014  |  Statements  |  Tunisia

Land Rights defenders: the forgotten victims of unbridled development - Publication of the 2014 Annual Report of the Observatory

​Land rights defenders are increasingly the target of repressive measures, says the Observatory in a new report published today in The Philippines, Mexico, and South Africa, and which will be presented tomorrow in Geneva at the United Nations Annual Forum on Business and Human Rights. The pressure on land has become unbearable and mobilisation for the respect of the economic, social and cultural rights of affected communities has become a high risk activity.

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December 2, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements

"We are not afraid". Land Rights Defenders: attacked for confronting unbridled development

The Annual Report 2014 of the Observatory provides a global analysis on the particular vulnerability of land rights defenders in a complex economic and legal environment. This picture is illustrated with 74 case studies in 29 countries. The report highlights that we are facing an extremely violent human drama and recalls that human rights must be placed at the centre of trade, investment and development policies to prevent the multiplication of deadly land conflicts. The scale of attacks against land rights defenders is particularly preoccupying and should attract the utmost reaction and urgent mobilisation of the international community and lead to the establishment of a clear and strong agenda that guarantees greater protection and empowerment for land rights defenders.

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December 2, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Reports and Publications

Launch of the “10 Days of Activism against Torture and Ill-Treatment” Campaign - 1 to 10 December 2014


The OMCT, the principal global civil society coalition against torture, is launching its Campaign “10 days of Activism against Torture and Ill-Treatment” for the third year in a row.

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November 28, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements

Azerbaijan:  Extreme concern about Ms. Leyla Yunus’ deteriorating health. The international community must react before it is too late!

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, an OMCT-FIDH joint programme, is extremely concerned by recent information on Ms. Leyla Yunus’ deteriorating health, which poses a serious threat to her life. The Observatory calls on the international community to strongly react in order to save her life.

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November 27, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements  |  Azerbaijan

Togo:  OMCT, CACIT and ACAT-Togo assess the level of implementation of the recommendations formulated by the UN Committee Against Torture

November 25, 2014  |   Monitoring Protection Mechanisms  |  Statements  |  Togo
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Colombia: New threats against several members of MOVICE

December 24, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Urgent Interventions  |  Colombia
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India: Ongoing and systematic attempts to criminalise MASUM and lack of investigation into the aggression suffered by Mr. Ajimuddin Sarkar

The Observatory has been informed by Banglar Manabadhikar Suraksha Mancha (MASUM) about the ongoing and systematic attempts to criminalise MASUM and the lack of investigation into the aggression suffered by Mr. Ajimuddin Sarkar when he was arrested and while in police custody in November 2014 (see background information). Mr. Sarkar, a District Human Rights Monitor for MASUM in Murshidabad district (West Bengal, India) is a renowned human rights defender who has investigated cases on human rights violations perpetrated by the police and Border Security Forces (BSF) personnel, and who has been instrumental in denouncing several other human rights violations in Murshidabad district.

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December 24, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Urgent Interventions  |  India

Russian Federation: Attack of the office of the Joint Mobile Group (JMG) and attacks against Mr. Igor Kalyapin

According to the information received, on December 13 and 14, 2014, the office of the JMG in Grozny (Chechnya) was set ablaze. The workers were captured and searched by masked armed men. The event on December14, was preceded by direct attacks against the Head of JMG and the Committee Against Torture, Mr. Igor Kalyapin

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December 19, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Urgent Interventions  |  Russian Federation

Egypt: Request for urgent action ahead of appeal verdict hearing on Yara Sallam

The Observatory for the Protection of Human Rights Defenders, a joint programme of the International Federation for Human Rights (FIDH) and the World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT), are submitting this urgent request for your consideration in the hope that you will act upon it to ensure the protection of human rights defender Ms. Yara Sallam, Transitional Justice Officer at Egyptian Initiative for Personal Rights (EIPR), who is facing a appeal verdict hearing on 28 December 2014.

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December 19, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements  |  Egypt

Turkey: Justice at last! Pınar Selek acquitted after 16 years of judicial harassment

Paris-Geneva, December 19, 2014. The Observatory welcomes the long-awaited for court decision to acquit Ms. Pınar Selek, 16 years after her arrest and protracted judicial harassment on fabricated charges of terrorism.

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December 19, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements  |  Turkey

Azerbaijan: Open Letter: Call for an immediate end to crackdown against human rights defenders

In 2014, despite the release of two human rights defenders, Messrs Hasan Huseynli and Emil Mammadov, five others have been arrested and remain in arbitrary, pre-trial detention: Ms. Leyla Yunus, Director of the Institute of Peace and Democracy (IPD) and a member of OMCT General Assembly, Mr. Arif Yunusov, Head of the Conflictology Department of IPD, Mr. Intigam Aliyev, a human rights lawyer, Head of the Legal Education Society, and Mr. Rasul Jafarov, an active participant in "Sing for Democracy" and "Art for Democracy", and Ms. Khadija Ismailova, an independent investigative journalist in Azerbaijan. In addition, two other defenders, Messrs. Anar Mammadli, Chairperson of the Election Monitoring and Democracy Studies Centre (EMDSC) and Bashir Suleymani, Executive Director of EMDSC, were sentenced in May 2014 by the Court on Grave Crimes to respectively  5,5 years’ and 3,5 years’ imprisonment on charges of “tax evasion”, “illegal entrepreneurship”, and “abuse of authority”, in the framework of trials which failed to comply with international standards. In total, eight defenders are currently behind bars.

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December 18, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements  |  Azerbaijan

Intensifying the European Union‘s support to human rights defenders: Civil society proposals for the new EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy

The undersigned civil society organisations working closely with HRDs worldwide, call on the EU and its member states to use the revision of the Action Plan as an opportunity to be more ambitious. While we welcome the practical and measurable action points of the current Action Plan, the EU and its member states also need to adopt a more coherent and holistic approach in their relations with human rights defenders.

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December 16, 2014  |   Human Rights Defenders  |  Statements  |  Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom

Côte d'Ivoire: Conférence de presse conjointe MIDH / OMCT relative à la Consultation Nationale pour prévenir et éradiquer la torture et les mauvais traitements

December 15, 2014  |  Statements  |  Côte d'Ivoire