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Chad: Security challenges used as a pretext to justify torture

During its 75th session, from 1st to 3rd November 2022, the CAT considered Chad’s second periodic report. Country rapporteurs were Mr Sébastien Touzé and Mr Todd Buchwald.

The country delegation was led by Ambassador Ahmad Makaila, permanent representative of Chad in Geneva.

Main issues discussed:

The Committee acknowledged the efforts deployed by the State party to adopt a legal framework in relation to the criminalization and legal safeguards to prevent torture and abolish the death penalty. On the other hand, the experts expressed deep concern about the violent repression of the peaceful demonstrations that took place on 20 October 2022, as part of a repressive governance system, where cases of extrajudicial killings, torture, disappearances, and massive arbitrary detentions were registered.

The country rapporteurs further raised concerns about the torture-based system that prevails in the country and is aimed at responding to security challenges. The experts deplored prison overcrowding and inhumane detention conditions as part of a larger policy aimed at repressing dissenting opinions. Particular concerns were raised with regard to conditions at the high-security prison of Koro-Toro in the northern region; the definition of torture in national law that is incomplete and doesn’t comply with the Convention; and the prevailing climate of impunity for acts of torture.

The Committee underlined the lack of measures to restrict persisting female genital mutilation, as well as the lack of policies for a better protection of women against sexual violence, especially in refugee camps and within the private sphere.

Please find the CAT’s recommendations here.

Follow-up recommendations

The State party should provide by 25 November 2023 information on the implementation of the recommendations related to:

  • Excessive use of force during the protests that took place in spring 2021 and autumn 2022
  • Detention conditions
  • Deaths in custody
  • Statistical data related to complaints and convictions for torture and other ill-treatment.

Watch here (part one) and here (part two) the dialogue with the Committee.

OMCT-related activities: CAT preparatory mission to Chad

From 20 to 24 September 2022, the World Organisation against Torture (OMCT) carried out a preparatory mission to Chad, ahead of the 75th session of the Committee against Torture. The OMCT Senior Human Rights Advisor in charge of Africa, together with the Chadian League for Human Rights (LTDH), a member of the SOS-Torture Network, met with civil society and government actors, some diplomatic delegations, journalists and victims of torture to prepare the alternative report and the participation of civil society in the review.

During this mission, a preparatory workshop was held on 21 and 22 September 2022 in N'Djamena. It brought together six journalists and a dozen Chadian civil society organisations working on the protection of human rights, the rights of the child and those of migrants, as well as the fight against torture and against violence targeting women. This workshop took place in the presence of a representative of the National Human Rights Commission (CNDH). Participants assessed the progress and shortcomings of the fight against torture over the past 13 years from a legal, institutional and practical point of view. The OMCT trained participants on the international anti-torture framework and the methodology for drafting an alternative report. The journalists who attended the workshop benefited from useful tools for how to follow and communicate the work and outcome of CAT sessions.

The OMCT also met with several victims and survivors of acts of torture and arbitrary detention, whose testimonies helped to better formulate recommendations for the CAT. A courtesy meeting was also organised with the director of human rights at the Ministry of Justice to inform the government on the priorities discussed in the civil society’s alternative report.

Read our alternative report (FRA)

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