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UN Committee Against Torture publishes findings on Palestine and UAE

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News briefing

Translated and edited by: Committee for Justice

Geneva: July 31, 2022

The United Nations Committee Against Torture issued its findings regarding Palestine and the United Arab Emirates, after reviewing the two states’ report during its last session.

State of Palestine

The Committee was seriously concerned about the casualties caused by the excessive use of force, particularly the use of lethal weapons by security forces and unidentified armed elements during demonstrations on the postponement of national elections in April 2021 and about Nizar Banat’s death in custody in June 2021. It requested that the State of Palestine effectively investigate all allegations relating to the excessive use of force and ensure that all perpetrators are prosecuted and victims are fully compensated. It also recommended that the State party guarantee that all officers can be effectively identified at all times to ensure individual accountability.

Regarding consistent reports that people in custody in facilities run by security forces and intelligence services in both the West Bank and the Gaza Strip are tortured or ill-treated, particularly during the investigation stage of proceedings, the Committee urged the State party to conduct prompt and effective investigations into complaints involving public officials. It also asked the State party to prosecute torturers and punish them with appropriate penalties.

United Arab Emirates

Concerning the involvement of the United Arab Emirates in the conflict in Yemen and its anti-terrorism efforts, the Committee expressed concerns over allegations of torture and ill-treatment by the State party’s regular armed forces, state security agencies, and related non-state armed groups. The Committee placed a special onus on the investigation and prosecution of offences of torture and ill-treatment in these situations, and called for a viable pathway for victims to seek justice, redress and rehabilitation.

The Committee was also concerned about the continued practice of female genital mutilation in the UAE and the lack of legislation criminalizing it. It called upon the State party to strengthen its efforts to stamp out gender-based violence and harmful practices by introducing new legislation and awareness-raising campaigns.

The above findings, officially named Concluding Observations, are now available online on the session page.

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