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Morocco Underlines Crucial Nature of Universal Implementation of Convention Against Torture
20/05/2022
Vienna - The universal ratification and implementation of the United Nations Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (UNCAT) is a crucial objective and should be supported and upheld by all states, said Friday Morocco's Ambassador and Permanent Representative in Vienna Azzeddine Farhane.

During an event held on the sidelines of the 31st session of the Commission on Crime Prevention and Criminal Justice, Farhane noted that all States must be supported by concrete international cooperation to build capacity and exchange good practices to devise effective and reliable national legislative, institutional and legal systems. "The aim is to ensure zero tolerance of torture," he stressed.

Held under the theme "Achieving Human Rights-Based Police Reform," the event aimed to present a practical tool to "improve efficiency, fairness, and transparency in policing, and reduce the risk of using torture and other ill-treatment," the diplomat noted.

The tool is one of the outcomes of the Convention Against Torture Initiative (CAT), which was launched in Geneva in 2014 by a core group of countries, namely Chile, Denmark, and Morocco, with the aim of achieving universal ratification of the UNCAT by 2024.

The core group was then consolidated by Fiji and the initiative has successfully developed and made its contribution to the global fight against torture, Farhane said.

Morocco's accession to the CAT stems from a "firm and constant" will to protect human rights and fundamental freedoms since the Constitution of the Kingdom provides that the practice of torture, in all its forms and by anyone, is a crime punishable by law, he recalled.

Morocco, which is party to the UNCAT and is one of the few countries to adhere to its optional protocol, has completed a long process of harmonization of its national legislative and legal system with the obligations contained therein, the diplomat said, noting that Morocco is engaged in constructive interaction and cooperation with the various components and mechanisms of the UN human rights system.

Morocco's national human rights institution, the CNDH, is fully committed to the prevention of torture through visits, reports and memorandums that it carries out under the protection mandate entrusted to it, the diplomat said. All these measures adopted by Morocco, "are an expression of its strong commitment to fight against torture in all its forms," he argued.

"Unfortunately, torture continues to be practiced and requires additional attention and mobilization. Member states must step up their efforts to combat this phenomenon and share their experience on how best to combat torture and other forms of inhuman and degrading treatment," Farhane concluded.

Established in 2014, the Convention Against Torture Initiative is a 10-year global initiative launched by the governments of Chile, Denmark, Fiji, Ghana, Indonesia, and Morocco to support and facilitate the universal ratification and implementation of the UNCAT by 2024.