Torture In 2014: 30 Years of Broken Promises

Report
May 12, 2014

Torture In 2014: 30 Years of Broken Promises

But even a single act of torture is a crime under international law. This means - at least for the 155 states which have ratified the Convention against Torture - governments must criminalize torture, investigate thoroughly and impartially any complaints, and prosecute perpetrators whenever there is sufficient evidence.

When a suspected torturer is present in a state that is party to the Convention against Torture, then - even if the act of torture has taken place in another country and none of its citizens are involved - the state must exercise "universal jurisdiction" over the crime, by examining the case, apprehending the suspect if necessary, then either extraditing him or her to another country or court for prosecution, or else prosecuting the suspect itself.

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