On Sunday, 22 May 2016, Al Mezan Center for Human Rights launched a training course entitled “Torture and Ill-treatment in IHL and Human Rights” within the Center’s combating torture and ill-treatment project. Attendance is comprised of 30 practicing and trainee lawyers. The training course is being held in Al Commodore Hotel in western Gaza City.
Samir Al Mana’ma, Al Mezan’s lawyer on the combatting torture project, opened the workshop by welcoming the participants and introducing the program. He emphasized the importance of this training in raising lawyers’ efficiency, improving their performance, and enhancing their abilities to combat torture and defend victims, notably in the context of Palestine’s accession to the Convention against Torture.
Al Mana’ma laid out the definition and main elements of torture and the most prominent legal charters which prohibit its use. He emphasized the physical and psychological impact that torture has on victims. Al Mana’ma reminded the room that the crime of torture does not fall under any statute of limitations.
In addition to Al Mezan staff, the sessions incorporates trainings conducted by The Gaza Community Mental Health Program; Adalah – Legal Center for Minority Rights; the Dean of the Law Faculty at Al Azhar University; two independent judges; and a forensic pathologist.
The program includes sessions on the International Bill of Human Rights; Convention against Torture; monitoring and documentation mechanisms, the role of human rights organizations in monitoring and reporting on torture, and pursuing legal initiatives; the role of healthcare professions in detecting and combating torture; the psychological and behavioral effects that torture has on victims; means and methods of torture, particularly those prevalent in Israel and Palestine; redress for torture victims under Israeli domestic law and Israeli impunity; redress for torture victims under Palestinian Law; and means of redress regionally and internationally.
Project funded by the European Union - Joint Project of Al Mezan Center for Human Rights, Adalah, and Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, in cooperation with the Treatment & Rehabilitation Center and Gaza Community Mental Health Programme (GCMHP). The contents of this training are the sole responsibility of Al Mezan and under no circumstances should be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union.