Friday News Updates

Editor’s Note: Every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, we will post updates on ongoing cases of torture, new opinion pieces in the media, or news stories or issues that emerge.

Several days after the United Nations released their damning report on torture in Afghanistan detention centres, a few governments with troops in the war-torn country have responded with assertions that their troops did not know and did not hand-over any detainees that were tortured later. Some commentators have also pushed asked the question further on what the U.S. should do in response to this report and what it means for their mission there.

The IRCT was in the news this week. Vatican Radio interviewed our Secretary General Brita Sydhoff following our press release that victims of torture in Libya have the right to holistic rehabilitation. And Danish actress Paprika Steen met and interviewed IRCT and RCT founder Inge Genefke for Danish TV, where they discussed the fight against torture.

The UN Refugee Agency provides a heart-wrenching story of sexual torture of Congolese women, taken as slaves, during the ongoing conflict. Look to this blog and our main website in the coming weeks for our increasing focus on women and girl victims of torture as a new project emerges to address the rights and needs of these marginalised victims of sexual torture.

An anti-torture organisation has condemned the continuing crime of abuse and mistreatment in the post-revolution Tunisia. “Torture and encroachment of physical sanctity of prisoners and detainees is still ongoing after the revolution… embodying a shock to this association regarding the atrocity of the violations,” they state.

European Union commissioner for development aid says they will move forward with a new policy to focus on human rights and democracy with their aid projects. Will this mean increased funding for torture rehabilitation centres and programmes? We don’t know, but hope so, especially as the EU is the largest donor of official development aid.

Compiled by Tessa.

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