Tunisia: Victory at the UN for a torture victim
Last month, the United Nations Committee Against Torture condemned Tunisia for the torture of Canadian-Tunisian national Taoufik Elaïba. The case was brought by TRIAL International in partnership with ACAT-France.
A father of four, Taoufik Elaïba was arrested in 2009. Having been tortured by the National Guard for six days, he signed a “confession” obtained under duress, which resulted in a seven-year prison sentence. Neither his denunciation of the torture he suffered nor the intervention of several lawyers could convince the judge to review his sentence.
In June 2013, ACAT-France and TRIAL International filed a complaint before the United Nations Committee Against Torture (CAT). The decision in favour of Mr. Elaïba was handed down on 6 May 2016. In its ruling, the CAT emphasised the lack of investigation into the torture allegations, the lack of compensation and the reliance on forced confessions to justify the victim’s continued detention.
TRIAL International welcomes the CAT’s decision and demands the immediate release of Mr. Elaïba and the prosecution of those responsible. The Tunisian government has repeatedly expressed before the UN its determination to eradicate torture: it is time these promises were acted upon.