OMCT office in Tunis holds workshop on torture litigation

‘Defendingvictims of torture - from documentation to legal action’

The WorldOrganisation Against Torture (OMCT) held on November 19, 20, 2011, a first of aseries of workshops on international standards and procedures on theprohibition of torture and other forms of cruel, inhuman or degrading treatmentor punishment.

The workshop targeted youngactivists, human rights lawyers and magistrates working in collaboration ofleading civil society organizations in Tunis and in theregions. It focused on the role of international standards within the processof transition in Tunisia, the scope ofthe international prohibition of torture and the legal requirements under theUN Convention Against Torture, as well as on the practical challenges in usinginternational standards within domestic and international litigation.

The training which wasconducted by Ibrahima Kane (Senegal – leading humanrights lawyer with the Open Society Foundation) and Georges Assaf (Lebanon – member of theOMCT General Assembly) introduced also concepts of strategic litigation inrelation to torture and discussed the scope of legal and judicial reforms tomake international standards a direct part of the transition process in Tunisia.

The OMCT hadopened its first ever field office on September 1, 2011. Itsactivities are part of a broader program in Tunisia accompanyingOMCT’s partner organizations in the transition process, providing expert adviceon anti-torture reforms and supporting efforts to strengthen accountability andthe legal and institutional framework for the prevention of torture. Earlierthis year the OMCT was able to conduct a high-level mission on the reformprocess and conducting an independent inspection of the prison system of thecountry (see pressstatement).

TheOMCT wishes to thank the Federal Republic of Germany for its support to thistraining.

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