Kyrgyzstan: Win-Movement to Stamp Out Torture

Libertarians, Liberals and the LI team there have helped mediate a social compact of civil and civic society leaders to track and stamp out police torture–some caused by poor training, some by quasi-offical polices and contradictory statutes.Both OSCE and Freedom House originated as initiatives of our advisoers of our sister LIO.

…the creation of a partnership with civil society to work on torture prevention, as well as the passage of a law creating a torture prevention mechanism.

On June 15, a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between several Kyrgyzstani government ministries, the OSCE Centre in Bishkek, Freedom House, and thirteen Kyrgyz human rights and other organizations creating a framework for government-civil society cooperation in combatting torture. On June 7, the Kyrgyzstani Parliament passed the Law on the National Center for the Prevention of Torture, legislation that fulfills Kyrgyzstan’s obligation under the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment’s Optional Protocol to establish a national mechanism to prevent torture in detention facilities.

“These groundbreaking actions by the Kyrgyz government demonstrate its commitment to eliminate torture and are a very positive step forward in combatting this scourge,” said David J. Kramer, president of Freedom House.

The signing of the MoU and the passage of the anti-torture law strengthen the government’s and civil society’s hand in investigating and preventing torture. For example, signatory organizations will be able to make unannounced visits to detention facilitates to monitor conditions and identify signs of torture or poor treatment. The law passed by the parliament creates a powerful domestic body to monitor detention facilities.

Torture is an issue that has wide resonance in Kyrgyzstan…

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