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Asian Alliance Against Torture and Ill-treatment

AASIA: Speeches of the Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-Treatment - the meeting of the parliamentarians

PRESS RELEASE: (Hong Kong, September 7, 2012) We are glad to present several of the speeches made at the meeting held in Hong Kong from July 21-24 organised by the Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-Treatment (AAATI) in which several parliamentarians from Bangladesh, India, Pakistan, the Philippines, Nepal, Indonesia and Sri Lanka participated. Several prominent human rights activists from Asia also participated.

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ASIA: ABC Kimberley radio interview on the meeting of the parliamentarians

STATEMENT: We are pleased to forward the full text and the audio of an interview with Mr. Basil Fernando of the Asian Human Rights Commission and ABC Kimberley about the meeting of the parliamentarians held in Hong Kong between July 21-24, 2012.

You may listen to the audio recording of the interview here.

The full text of the article may be found here.

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ASIA: Decisive state action key to end torture and ill-treatment

AHRC-PRL-028-2012-01STATEMENT : (Hong Kong, July 25, 2012) Parliamentarians from eight Asian states and civil society representatives, who met at Hong Kong for the first Asian parliamentarians' meeting organised by the Asian Alliance against Torture and Illtreatment (AAATI), demanded firm actions from Asian states to end torture and ill-treatment in the region.

Along with civil society representatives, dignitaries that attended the historic meeting include, Honourable: Mr. Eran Wickramaratne (Sri Lanka), Mr. V. T. Balram (India), Mr. Mohammad Fazlul Azim (Bangladesh), Ms. Pushpa Bhusal (Nepal), Ms. Abbasi Nusrat Bano and Mr. Saeed Ghani (Pakistan), Mr. Sayed Muhammad Muliady (Indonesia), and Mr. Raymond Palatino (Philippines). Also in attendance were human rights activists from Burma, Thailand and Denmark.

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ASIA: We need anti-torture legislation in PakistanAHRC-STM-152-2012-01

STATEMENT : On Sunday afternoon, (July 22), Abbasi Nusrat Bano, a member of the Provincial Assembly of Sindh, delivered this speech to great applaus as part of the Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians in the Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-treatment. Eight Parliamentarians from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Philippines, Pakistan and Sri Lanka as well as several prominent human rights activists participated in this four day meeting.

"Dear friends and delegates from the different Asian countries. I am thankful to Asian Human Rights Commission for inviting me to this conference on torture and ill-treatment and I am happy to represent the legislators from my province of Sindh."Read More...



ASIA: Democracy is the best revenge

AHRC-STM-150-2012.jpgSTATEMENT : On Sunday afternoon, the Pakistani Senator, Saeed Ghani, affiliated with the Pakistan People's Party delivered this speech as part of the Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians against Torture and Ill-treatment. Eight Parliamentarians from a number of Asian countries and several prominent human rights activists are participating in the four day meeting.

I wish to thank Mr. John Joseph Clancey for chairing this conference on torture and ill-treatment under the auspices of Asian Human Rights Commission and RCT. I am also thankful to the AHRC for inviting me here to this conference.

I am a Senator from the ruling party, the Pakistan Peoples' Party, which has passed through political victimisation by the extra constitutional forces, particularly from martial law governments. During these periods and during the periods of nondemocratic governments hundreds of our workers were severely tortured and died the custody.  Read More...



NEPAL: Combating torture

AHRC-STM-149-2012.jpgSTATEMENT : On Sunday afternoon, former member of the Nepalese Constituent Assembly Pushpa Bhusal delivered this speech as part of the deliberations in the Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians against Torture and Ill-treatment. Eight Parliamentarians from a number of Asian countries and several prominent human rights activists are participating in this four day meeting.

Fellow members of the Parliaments, representatives of the civil society and other delegates to the program, organized by the Asian Legal Resource Centre and the Rehabilitation and Research Center for Torture victims, I thank you for providing me this forum to share the latest developments in the combat against torture in Nepal. Read More...



ASIA: Basic argument for the elimination of police torture

AHRC-STM-148-2012.jpgSTATEMENT : The following is a speech by Basil Fernando, Director for Policy and Programme Development at the Asian Human Rights Commission, Hong Kong. The speech was delivered at the Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians in Hong Kong on the 22 July 2012, as part of the Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-treatment.

What does police torture mean? If we were to ask this question, and then proceed to answer it, someone may ask in turn, "Wait, how do you know?" It would take us into realms of epistemology: "how do we know anything?" Such a question been asked through the ages. And, one answer that has emerged in the last few centuries is that one knows by the collection and observation of data. Our age is symbolized by the images of the telescope and the microscope. And today, we answer questions about what something means through observation and analysis of data. Read More...



ASIA: Welcoming speech by Jan Ole Haagensen, Director RCT at the AAATI Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians

AHRC-STM-147-2012.jpgSTATEMENT : Speech by Jan Ole Haagensen, Director of International Department of Rehabilitation and Research Centre for Torture Victims, Denmark. The speech was delivered at the Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians in Hong Kong on the 21 July 2012 as part of the Asian Alliance Against Torture and Ill-treatment.

"Honourable parliamentarians, government officials, researchers, members of the judiciary, colleagues in the Asian Human Rights Commission and colleagues from other human rights organisations."

"First, I would like to greet all participants warmly. A special welcome goes to the parliamentarians and for my colleagues among the human rights organizations. It is a great pleasure for me to see you all here and for me to be together with you in the coming days’ elaborations. You cannot imagine how much I have looked forward to this event where two entities - crucial for having a vibrant and living democracy - are present; parliamentarians and civil society organizations. We are here together to explore how we can best eradicate the gruesome and anachronistic practice of torture." Read More...



ASIA: The opening speech for the AAATI Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians

AHRC-STM-146-2012-02.jpgSTATEMENT : (Hong Kong, July 21, 2012) This morning, Mr. John Clancey, the chairperson of the Asian Legal Resource Centre, delivered this speech inaugurating the deliberation of the Meeting of Asian Parliamentarians against Torture and Ill-treatment. Eight Parliamentarians from a number of Asian countries and several prominent human rights activists are participating in this three day meeting.

"It gives me great pleasure to address this gathering of legislators from several countries, sitting together with a group of committed human rights activists. This gathering itself, to discuss the evil of torture, is a matter of great significance. While legislators from different countries often gather to discuss matters relating to trade and business, finance, geo-political alliances and other similar matters, it is rare that such meetings are held to discuss matters of great significance for the ordinary citizens of a country.  It is therefore a great pleasure for me to participate in such a meeting. I am glad to have been invited to share a few thoughts for your consideration as you prepare to start your sharing and important deliberations."  Read More...



ASIA: Asian Parliamentarians to discuss ways for eliminating torture

AHRC-PRL-027-2012-02.JPGPRESS RELEASE : (Hong Kong, July 19, 2012) Parliamentarians from several Asian countries are poised to meet and discuss ways to end the widespread practice of torture and ill-treatment in their countries. The three day meeting will take place in Kowloon, Hong Kong, starting on July 21st.

The meeting is a significant step towards the implementation of the United Nations' Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT).

Parliamentarians from Bangladesh, India, Indonesia, Nepal, Pakistan, Philippines and Sri Lanka have already confirmed their participation. Several prominent human rights activists from South and South-East Asia will also be traveling to Hong Kong to contribute to the discussion.

This press release is also available in Indonesian Bahasa, Burmese, Filipino, French, Korean, Hindi, Nepali and Sinhalese.
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WORLD: A unique regional initiative: The Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-Treatment

Asia.pngArticle : It is well documented that torture, enforced disappearances and extra-judicial executions are carried out throughout Asia by agents of the state, notably police, military, and special investigation units, who expose ordinary citizens to such heinous crimes in complete disregard of national legislation.

Torture is rampant, but even today it remains a taboo in many countries — and for good reasons. Human rights defenders and civil society organizations strive to break this taboo. They meticulously document torture and other human rights violations and disseminate information about these abusive practices to the governments and the general public in their countries. A human rights movement is growing, demanding an immediate stop to the use of torture. But more needs to be done to bring more people into this movement, notably parliamentarians, medical professionals, media people, and other progressive forces.  Read More...



WORLD: The AHRC and RCT launches the Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-Treatment (AAATI)

Asia.pngArticle : The idea that we have to form the Asian Alliance against Torture and Ill-Treatment comes after almost 15 years of work to introduce the idea of the elimination of torture and ill-treatment to Asia. When the Asian Human Rights Commission started work on torture, we were pioneers in the region. The human rights movement in Asia did not pay much attention to this problem at that time. Perhaps many thought that it was too big a problem to be addressed. However, in our work we have found so many friends from almost all countries of Asia, and we have also found that the desire to address this issue firmly is very much a part of the consciousness of the ordinary folk in Asia. Read More...



ASIA: Asian Alliance Against Torture and Ill-treatment launched

Asia.pngStatement : A group of 26 human rights defenders and organisations, today concluded a five-day regional conclave and formed a unique regional initiative - The Asian Alliance Against Torture and Ill-treatment (AAAT). The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) and the Rehabilitation and Research Centre for Torture Victims (RCT), Denmark took the lead to organise the foundational meeting of the AAAT, first of its kind in Asia. The meeting was held from 15 to 19 August at the AHRC's office in Hong Kong. Read More...

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