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The Role of the UN Committee Against Torture in the Development of the UN Convention Against Torture

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ISBN13: 9789041116505
ISBN: 9041116508
Published: July 2001
Publisher: Brill Academic Publishers
Format: Hardback
Price: £164.00



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Human rights are a matter of international concern. During 1989, within the framework of the United Nations, the UN Convention against Torture was drafted. The purpose of this particular human rights treaty was to make more effective the struggle against torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. States parties undertook various obligations: not to return anyone to a State where there is a serious risk that he or she will be subjected to torture, to prosecute suspects of torture whoever the suspect may be and wherever the crime took place, and to ensure that victims obtain redress. A state can show that it takes these obligations seriously by submitting to supervision by the UN Committee against Torture. However, from the start, the drafters of the Convention have limited that supervision.;Amongst other things, the Committee is not empowered to take legally binding decisions and the success of such supervisory procedures depends on the co-operation of states parties. From this perspective, and considering that similar treaty obligations and procedures had already been developed in the context of other human rights instruments, what is the raison d'etre of this treaty body?;This study examines the role of the Committee in the development of the UN Convention against Torture. One of the findings is that the Committee against Torture has gained authority through its independent and quasi-judicial performance and activities. However, most of these activities did not go beyond the activities already undertaken by the UN Human Rights Committee, which had been in operation for many years previously. The practice of the Committee against Torture shows en passant the achievement of the Human Rights Committee and the success of ""soft"" procedures of international supervision.

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Contents:
List of Abbreviations. UN-documents.
1. Introduction. Part I: Context.
2. The Evolution Towards an International Ban on Torture.
3. Background and Development of the Convention Against Torture. Part II: The Role of the Committee in the Development of the Supervisory Procedures.
4. The Committee Against Torture.
5. The Reporting System.
6. The Inquiry into Systematic Torture.
7. Complaints Procedures. Part III: The Role of the Committee in the Development of the Substantial Provisions.
8. The Definition of Torture.
9. Prevention of Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment.
10. Non-Refoulement when at Risk of Being Subjected to Torture.
11. Criminal Enforcement.
12. Victims of Torture.
13. Conclusion. Annex -- Convention against Torture. Literature. Sources of Case Law. Index.