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The Convention and its Optional Protocol

- Status of ratification
- Reservations and declarations
OP to the Convention against Torture
- Status of ratification
- Reservations and declarations

The Committee and its work

Working Methods
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Press Releases

Reporting to the Committee

Reporting Process
Initial and periodic reports
Concluding observations
Reporting Guidelines

Individual Complaints
Further information

Treaty bodies database

Related UN Links

Special Rapporteur on Torture
UN Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture
Special Rapporteur on Extra-judicial, Summary or Arbitrary Executions

External links

Amnesty International

Torture Reporting Book

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Committee against Torture

Monitoring the prevention of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

[image: Haitian prisoners being held before trial in a jail cell at a police station in Port-au-Prince. UN Photo# 187325C]The Committee Against Torture (CAT) is the body of independent experts that monitors implementation of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment by its State parties.

All States parties are obliged to submit regular reports to the Committee on how the rights are being implemented. States must report initially one year after acceding to the Convention and then every four years. The Committee examines each report and addresses its concerns and recommendations to the State party in the form of “concluding observations”.

In addition to the reporting procedure, the Convention establishes three other mechanisms through which the Committee performs its monitoring functions: the Committee may also, under certain circumstances, consider individual complaints or communications from individuals claiming that their rights under the Convention have been violated, undertake inquiries, and consider inter-state complaints.

The Optional Protocol to the Convention creates the Subcommittee on Prevention and allows in-country inspections of places of detention to be undertaken in collaboration with national institutions. In order to elect the first ten members of the Subcommittee, a meeting of States party will take place on 18 December 2006.

[Image: In Port-au-Prince, International Civilian Mission observers talking with Haitian prisoners about their cases. UN Photo# 187347C]The Committee meets in Geneva and normally holds two sessions per year consisting of a plenary (of three weeks in May and two weeks in November) and a one-week pre-sessional working group.

The Committee also publishes its interpretation of the content of human rights provisions, known as general comments on thematic issues.

For more information about the work of the Committee Against Torture, click here.

New Publication

Now available in PDF

Compilación de observaciones finales del Comité contra la Tortura sobre países de América Latina y el Caribe (1988-2005)

A compilation of CAT concluding observations for Latin American and Caribbean countries in Spanish, from 1988 to 2005.

Published by OHCHR, IIDH and ASDI.

ISBN: 956-7097-08-9

To download a copy (1.06 MB), click on the cover page

A limited number of hard copies are available from the Santiago regional office by contacting gmira@eclac.cl Subject to availability of stock.

Forthcoming Events

Recent Developments and Events

6-24 November 2006: 37th session of CAT meets in Geneva - Concluding observations now available

30 November 2005: Elected Members of the Committee against Torture

Recent Ratifications

3 November 2006 :
Liechtenstein becomes the 29th State party to CAT Optional Protocol

26 September 2006 :
Serbia becomes the 27th State party to CAT Optional Protocol

27 November 2006: San Marino becomes the 143rd State party to CAT

22 September 2006 :
Andorra becomes the 142nd State party to CAT

Note: CAT and OPCAT entry into force occurs on the 30th day after date of deposit of instrument of ratification or accession. Dates given are for entry into force.

OPCAT entered into force on 22 June 2006 after 20 States became party to the Protocol.


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