20 Mar 2015

Fiji government urged to change torture stance

9:08 am on 20 March 2015

The Fiji Citizens Constitutional Forum is urging the government to remove all proposed reservations to the United Nations Convention Against Torture.

The Fiji Parliament has unanimously endorsed the ratification of the convention.

The chief executive of the CCF, Reverend Akuila Yabaki, says he welcomes the move to ratify it but is worried at the government's expected reservation to Article 1 of the convention, which defines torture.

Reverend Yabaki says this definition of torture is more comprehensive than what is in the Fiji constitution.

"The reservations made by the FijiFirst government restricts the scope of the application of the convention, and also raises doubts as to the commitment of the government to fulfill its obligation under the convention."

The Fiji government says Section 11 of the Fiji constitution arguably provides one of the strongest domestic protections against torture in the world.

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