Amnesty International has launched a new campaign against governments around the world who are still betraying their commitments to end torture. Katherine Iorio went to investigate their crusade on this issue.
Amnesty International’s steps to combat torture:
Firstly, governments need to wake up from their state of denial. Governments owe it to their citizens to be brave enough to confront the issue head on and to admit they are not immune from blame. In order to live up to the promises they have signed up to they need to acknowledge the gap that exists between the law and the reality on the ground.
Secondly, they need to tackle these issues head on. They can do this by genuinely putting in place and applying a list of internationally recognized safeguards to prevent unpunished torture. These measures include proper medical examinations, prompt access to lawyers, independent checks on places of detention and criminalization of torture in national legislation and the video recording of interrogations.
Thirdly, and this is a key point, states must bring torturers to justice. Perpetrators must be held to account and victims of torture must receive reparation and effective independent mechanisms for investigating and prosecuting tortures are essential. And without these there can never be justice or peace for the victims, their families and the accused.