You are here

Anti-torture partners celebrate progress, vow more efforts

By Rana Husseini - Apr 03,2016 - Last updated at Apr 03,2016

AMMAN — Activists and government entities involved in the third phase of Karama project that addresses torture and abuse claims vowed on Sunday to continue their pursuit to improve the treatment and conditions of detainees, and personal freedoms in Jordan.

The pledges were made at the conclusion of the third phase of Karama project that is run by the Ministry of Justice, National Centre for Human Rights (NCHR), Mizan for Law and the Danish Institute against Torture (DIGNITY).

Launched in 2008, the Karama project aimed at improving the way detainees, and inmates are treated, and the conditions in detention and correctional facilities.

“The programme has contributed to the improvement of the treatment and conditions for persons detained at correctional and rehabilitation centres in Jordan, and in strengthening the capacities to fight all sorts of ill treatment and torture,” said Lubna Nasser, DIGNITY’s country representative.

The accomplishments have been internationally acknowledged, according to Nasser, in her remarks at the two-hour ceremony at the Crown Plaza Hotel.

She referred to the concluding observations on Jordan from the UN Committee against Torture (2015) that welcomed the establishment of a national register for cases of torture at the public prosecution offices, holding two international conferences on torture and prevention, alternatives to pre-trial detention and legislative amendments. 

“The Karama partners are important actors in this human rights field and the joint efforts make the approach stronger. I would like to thank all the partners in the Karama program for the good cooperation,” Nasser told the gathering.

Nasser said the next step is for the partners “to review in more depth the precise results and progress of the programme since its establishment in 2008 with a view to optimise the strategy for the coming years and prepare for the fourth phase in 2017”.

“We all strive to see Jordan free of torture incidents in the near future,” Nasser stressed.

Also speaking during the ceremony was Public Prosecutor Rami Tarawneh, who stressed that torture incidents in Jordan are minimal and “do not constitute a phenomenon”.

“The few reported incidents of abuse on the rights and freedoms of people are acts conducted by individuals, and in no way they represent the policy of the state or the justice system,” Tarawneh stressed.

He added that there is a special register at the prosecutor general office in Amman “that receives any complaints”.

“We examine each claim and take the necessary action when needed,” he said.

Nisreen Zreiqat, who heads the NCHR Criminal Justice Unit and the Acting Commissioner for Public Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, said that Jordan has gone a long way in improving the status of inmates.

“We have a team of activists who can visit any correctional facility in Jordan without prior approval or appointment. This was a taboo in the past,” Zreiqat said.

The project also aimed at strengthening the professional capacity of law enforcement institutions to prevent torture and ill treatment, and respond appropriately and effectively when such acts occur.

The project was also designed to strengthen the capacity of core institutions within the criminal justice sector with the ultimate goal of improving the treatment of people in prison or custody and the conditions of their confinement.

 

It sought to ensure that torture and ill treatment are documented, prosecuted and redressed in accordance with international legal standards. 
The programme is funded by the Danish Ministry of Foreign Affairs under the Danish-Arab Initiative.

up
38 users have voted.

Add new comment

CAPTCHA
This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.
16 + 2 =
Solve this simple math problem and enter the result. E.g. for 1+3, enter 4.

Newsletter

Get top stories and blog posts emailed to you each day.