Human Rights: UN Expert on Torture to Visit Ukraine

On 1 February 2017, children eat a hot meal at a heated emergency shelter in freezing cold Avdiivka, Ukraine, following intense fighting at the end of January 2017. Photo: UNICEF/Aleksey Filippov
On 1 February 2017, children eat a hot meal at a heated emergency shelter in freezing cold Avdiivka, Ukraine, following intense fighting at the end of January 2017. Photo: UNICEF/Aleksey Filippov

The UN Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, or punishment will visit Ukraine to assess the situation and developments related to the prohibition of torture and ill-treatment in the country.

The Special Rapporteur, Nils Melzer, will visit the country from 28 May to 8 June 2018, at the invitation of the Government.

“I look forward to engaging with the Ukrainian Government on challenges arising with a view to preventing torture and ill-treatment, promoting accountability for violations, and fulfilling victims’ right to redress, in particular in the larger context of the crisis which broke out in early 2014,” said the independent expert.

[ Civilian Deaths to Rise in Ukraine Violence: UN ]

During the 12-day visit, Melzer will meet relevant authorities and human rights institutions, as well as civil society organizations, victims of torture and their families. The special rapporteur will also conduct visits to places of detention such as police stations, pre-trial facilities and prisons. In eastern Ukraine, Melzer will visit cities under the control of armed groups.

Melzer will present his final report on the visit to the UN Human Rights Council in March 2019.

The Special Rapporteur will hold a press conference on 8 June 2018 at 1400, at the Ukrainian Crisis Media Centre, Ukrainian house, 2 Khreshchatyk Street (European Square), Kyiv, Ukraine.

Mr. Nils Melzer (Switzerland) was appointed by the UN Human Rights Council as the Special Rapporteur on torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, or punishment in November 2016.

Mr. Melzer has previously worked for the International Committee of the Red Cross and the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs and is currently the Human Rights Chair of the Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights.

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Rakesh Raman