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1 practice of torture for the purpose of gathering infor
mation about such practice; and
(4) instructions to express concern in individual
cases of torture brought to the attention of a United States diplomatic mission including, whenever feasible, sending United States observers to trials when there is
reason to believe that torture has been used against
(c) The Secretary of Commerce should continue to en10 force vigorously the current restrictions on the export of 11 crime control equipment pursuant to the Export Administra12 tion Act of 1979.
13 (d) The heads of the appropriate departments of the 14 United States Government that furnish military and law en15 forcement training to foreign personnel, particularly person16 nel from countries where the practice of torture has been a 17 documented concern, shall include in such training, when rel18 evant, instruction regarding international human rights 19 standards and the policy of the United States with respect to 20 torture.
Chairman FASCELL. The gentleman from Michigan.
Mr. BROOMFIELD. Mr. Chairman, first of all I would like to ask permission to put my own remarks about the resolution in the record, following your comments.
Chairman FASCELL. Without objection.
[The prepared statement of Mr. Broomfield follows:].
PREPARED STATEMENT OF HON. WILLIAM S. BROOMFIELD ON H.J. RES. 605
Mr. Chairman, when one thinks of human rights violations, torture stands out as one of the most brutal and uncivilized acts that human beings can inflict upon each other. Difficult as it is for most of us merely comprehend, torture is all too horrifyingly real for its unfortunate victims in nearly one hundred countries worldwide. While the existence of physical and emotional cruelty is rarely acknowledged by governments, it continues to inflict almost unimaginable suffering on victims of every age, religion, ethnicity, and sex.
The issue of torture must be addressed energetically and presistently by our government, our religious leaders, our educational institutions, and our people. Wherever it can do the most good, it must be raised in quiet diplomacy, and in harsh public denunciation. Allegations of torture must be given thorough investigation and no government guilty of either practicing or tolerating the practice of torture should be immune for our strong recrimination.
I believe our consideration of H.J. Res. 605 will firmly indicate Congressional determination to give this issue the continued attention that is necessary to reduce and ultimately eliminate the practice of torture. Furthermore, this resolution will give the President yet another instrument with which to fight for an end to torture. As a cosponsor of this measure, I urge my colleagues to support its adoption by the Committee.
Mr. BROOMFIELD. I am in support of the resolution.
The State Department, in a letter to the chairman of the committee, recommended two changes in the first two paragraphs. If the clerk would read the changes, I would appreciate it.
Mr. FINLEY. Amendment offered by Mr. Broomfield. Beginning on page 1, strike out the first two paragraphs of the preamble and insert in lieu thereof the following: "Whereas international human rights organizations have investigated and reported on the use of torture in many countries throughout the world; Whereas the Department of State in its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices has reported that torture is all too frequent in many countries of the world."
Chairman FASCELL. Are those both amendments considered en
Mr. BROOMFIELD. Yes.
Chairman FASCELL. Is there any discussion on the amendments? If not, all those in favor signify by saying "aye"
All those opposed, "no."
The "ayes" have it. The amendments are agreed to.
The gentleman from Iowa, Mr. Leach.
Mr. LEACH. Mr. Chairman, I will be very brief and indicate the minority is fully supportive of this particular approach, as is the administration. I would hope that it would be adopted.
Chairman FASCELL. Without objection, the resolution, as amended, is agreed to, and all appropriate steps will be taken to bring it to the floor.1
[Whereupon the committee proceeded to other matters.]
1 H.J. Res. 605, as amended, was passed by the House of Representatives on Sept. 11, 1984, by voice vote. On Sept. 21, the Senate agreed to H.J. Res. 605, as amended, by voice vote.
BRIEFING PAPER BY AMNESTY INTERNATIONAL ENTITLED "AGAINST TORTURE," APRIL 1984
While government representatives universally and collectively condemn torture, more than a third of the world's governments have used or tolerated torture or N-treatment of prisoners in the 1980s. Political suspects and other prisoners face torture in police stations, secret detention centres, camps and military barracks.
In a major new report, Torture in the Eighties, Amnesty International cites allegations of torture and H-treatment in some 98 countries-documenting complaints by victims in every region of the world, from security headquarters in Spain to prison cells in Iran, from secret police centres in Chile to special psychiatric hospitals in the Soviet Union.
The report cites cases involving systematic torture during interrogation-electric shocks, severe beatings and mock executions; harsh prison conditions; the participation of doctors in the process of torture; and punishments such as floggings and amputations.
The report is part of Amnesty International's continuing campaign against torture and it spells out a global program for the abolition of this abuse.
Thousands upon thousands of Amnesty International volunteers around the world are working together to eradicate torture and end cruelty to prisoners. In the next two years they will be taking part in a special drive to try to rid the world of these violations of human rights.
This briefing paper is part of that drive. It is based on the introductory chapters of Torture in the Eighties and examines the Institution, process and agents of torture and touches on action which can be taken to prevent it by victims and their families, national groups and international organizations. It also includes a comprehensive list of safeguards and remedies, drawn up on the basis of Amnesty International's own experience, together with the text of the United Nations Declaration against Torture.
IN THE EIGHTIES
AQUI SE TORTURA
In Chile human rights organizations have identified secret detention centres in which political suspects have been interrogated under torture. A group of auns, priests and other church members protested outside such a centre at Calle Borgoño 1470 in Santiago in October 1983.
At the detention centre on the Cyprus coast it was well past midnight when a military vehicle stopped abruptly outside. It had driven across the island from Nicosia through the night. Two men went straight inside. One was the colonial Governor, the other his military commander.
"We walked straight into the room where the interrogation was taking place", wrote the governor years afterwards. "We could see no sign of ill-treatment. Nor could we see any indications of force having been used on the villagers who had been interrogated earlier.
But our visit that night was known
It was a demonstration of political will. The scene was Cyprus during the closing months of the Greek Cypriot insurgency in the late 1950s. Soldiers and civilians had been killed and intelligence information from captured insurgents was considered essential if their campaign of violence was not to disrupt movement toward a political settlement of the longstanding Cyprus dispute involving
Greece, Turkey and the United Kingdom. Allegations of torture had been brought to the Governor that night. He was not especially surprised. In 1956 Greece had brought a complaint against the United Kingdom before the European Commission on Human Rights concerning whipping and collective punishments. There had also been allegations of brutality during interrogation. Fact-finding by the commission continued and on hearing the new allegations concerning torture in a village on the opposite of Cyprus from his headquarters in Nicosia, the Governor and his military commander set out for their ride through the night.
Clearly, in the 1980s, finding the political will to investigate and prevent torture is in most cases far more complex than the prerogative of a single former colonial commander.
Revulsion at the extermination camps of the Second World War led to a convention outlawing genocide for all time and today's torture chambers demand a similar international response. The torture and ill-treatment can be stopped. The international framework for its abolition exists. What is lacking is the political will of governments to stop torturing people. It is as simple and as difficult as that. Amnesty International hopes that its continuing campaign against torture will contribute to creating this political will so that our generation can banish torture from the earth.
Edwin Lopez, Philippines: tortured with electric shocks during interrogation.
Apologists for torture generally
Even if torture could be shown to be efficient in some cases, it is never permissible. Torture is a calculated assault on human dignity and for that reason alone is to be condemned absolutely. Nothing denies our common humanity more than the purposeful infliction of unjustified and unjustifiable pain and humiliation on a helpless captive. Once justifled and allowed for the narrower purpose of combating political violence, torture will almost Inevitably be used for a wider range of purposes against an Increasing proportion of the population. Those who torture once will go on using it, encour. aged by its "efficiency" in obtain. ing the confession or information they seek, whatever the quality of those statements. They will argue within the security apparatus for the extension of torture to other detention centres; they may form elite groups of interrogators to refine its practice; they may develop methods that hide its more obvious effects; they will find further reasons and needs for it if particular segments of society become restive. What was to be done "just once" will become an institutionalized practice and will erode the moral and legal prin. ciples that stand against a form of violence that could affect all of society.
As for the state, if it purports to uphold justice, torture should be banned: torture subverts a basic tenet of just punishment, a prescribed penalty for a proven offence. If a government subscribes to the rule of law, torture should be forbidden: most national constitutions as well as
The process of torture
No experience of torture is typical, but there are discernible patterns in the thousands of personal testimonies, affidavits and statements that have reached Amnesty International in the 1980s. For the individual victim torture can mean being seized at night, violently, while family and neighbours are terrorized into helplessness; being blindfolded and beaten in the police van or the unmarked car; the vague reasons, if any, given for the detention; the threats of execution, of rape, of family members being killed in "accidents"; the preliminary questions at the police station or army barracks about present health, medicines, past illnesses, so as not to go too far in the procedures that follow; the sometimes senseless questions ("Why were you born in Tunceli?'') for which there are no answers-and throughout, the anticipation and the fact of brute force, without limit, without end, the knowledge of being beyond the help of family or lawyer, of being totally at the mercy of those whose job it is to have no mercy.
Torture usually means isolation: abduction, secret detention, incommunicado detention beyond the reach of family, friends and legal assistance. Blindfolding during days of interrogation and torture serves to increase the sense of being alone and defenceless. Iranian political prisoners released in 1982 tell how it is used at Evin Prison, the Revolutionary Court headquarters in Tehran:
"The worst thing in Evin is being
Essential to torture is the sense that the
"We are six teams trained in Turkey and given full responsibility," a torturer
international law in war and