By Elizabeth Willoughby on
Amnesty International, in challenging the arguments for torture, has posted interviews on YouTube of former US president Jimmy Carter, former Ireland president Mary Robinson, government officials and experts to prove that “Torture Can Never Be Justified.”
“When our top leaders profess, publicly even, that torture should be permitted in our prisons in order to protect security, that is embarrassing to me,” says Carter. “It’s obviously contrary to the basic principles on which our nation was founded.”
Although most countries of the world have adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – in which Article 5 states that “No one shall be subjected to torture or to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment” – prisoners in various regions of the world spend 23 hours a day in tiny cells and are being held illegally and treated inhumanly while governments are not only condoning it, they’re ordering it.
Murat Kurnaz, a former Guantanamo detainee, said, “They used electro shocks on me, and they did water boarding. It’s called water treatment. There’s a bucket filled with water, they stick my head in it and at the same time they hit me into my stomach so I had to inhale all this water.”
Abu Omar, a victim of secret detention for four years, said, “I feel like a destroyed man. All I want is to be on my own. All night long I suffer nightmares and all day long I remember torture. So I shake.”
“It’s important that governments do protect against acts of terrorism,” says Mary Robinson, former Ireland president. “That’s their responsibility. But they also have a responsibility to uphold their commitments to human rights. Unfortunately there is a very worrying trend… in different parts of the world: secret places of detention, abuses in detention, the ambivalence about torture that’s led to the situation in Abu Ghraib and elsewhere that has become known. What about the places that are not known, where torture is being carried out? …It’s very important that governments reaffirm that torture is not acceptable, that there is no impunity.”
See Amnesty’s Torture Can Never Be Justified here.
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