UNCAT Implementation Tool 6/2019

The UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel,
Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
(UNCAT) enables and facilitates cooperation among
States parties on extraditing those suspected of or
responsible for offences of torture. This cooperation
framework fulfills the general pledge of all UN Member
States, under Articles 1(3), 55 and 56 of the UN Charter,
to take joint action to advance human rights.
By adopting and giving effect to UNCAT’s “extradition
framework”, States can secure the lawful surrender and
transfer of people suspected of or responsible for offences
of torture. This framework has been set up in pursuit of the
shared goals of UNCAT States parties of ending impunity by
bringing perpetrators of such serious crimes to justice and
eliminating safe havens for criminals. While there remain
challenges in realising extradition for offences of torture,
the Convention offers much to States parties to facilitate
such processes.

Offences of torture include all acts of
torture or omissions, attempts, complicity,
participation — such as aiding and abetting
— conspiracy, instigation, incitement, as well
as acts by public officials or other persons
acting in an official capacity who consent to or
acquiesce in torture (Articles 1 and 4, UNCAT).

Extradition is a lawful procedure by which
States cooperate with one another in criminal
matters, regulating the formal surrender
of suspects and convicted persons from
one jurisdiction to another with a view to
their prosecution or serving sentences of
imprisonment for prior convictions.

Thanks to UNCAT’s extradition provisions, States parties are able to enlist each other’s support in countering
torture, and strengthening mutual assistance and cooperation in criminal law enforcement matters. The
framework established under UNCAT also generates goodwill, and builds stronger bilateral and multilateral
relations between States.
This tool outlines the different elements of UNCAT’s extradition framework and, with a view to inspiring
cooperation in extradition matters related to UNCAT, shares examples of States’ treaties, laws, policies,
procedures and practices that give effect to UNCAT’s extradition-related provisions.

The CTI ‘UNCAT Implementation Tools’ are a series of practical tools designed to share good practices among States on the
implementation of the UN Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
(UNCAT). They offer thematic guidance and ideas for State practitioners and policymakers as they develop or revise contextspecific strategies, mechanisms and procedures to prevent torture and other forms of ill-treatment or punishment, and provide
remedies for victims.


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