The Experience of Small Island Developing States with the CAT
On the 28th of February 2023, UPR Info joined the side-event “Tapping into SIDS Experiences with #UNCAT" organized by CTI-Convention Against Torture Initiative. The event aimed at exploring the challenges in the ratification of the United Nation Convention Against Torture (UNCAT) by Small Island Developing States (SIDS). Various speakers took the floor to share experiences on the implementation of UNCAT, especially to achieve the Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) of the 2030 Agenda.
Torture: The 4th issue most raised in the UPR Working Group sessions
During the event, Mona M’Bikay, UPR Info’s executive director, provided examples of how UPR recommendations contributed to the ratification of UNCAT in different SIDS. Following UPR recommendations received in the second cycle, Fiji ratified the UNCAT and also encouraged many States to do the same and strengthen measures to combat violence in the following UPR Working Group sessions. This example demonstrates the importance of UPR recommendations and the influence that UN Member States can have on each other to improve human rights protection.
Mrs. M’Bikay also highlighted in her statement the scarce participation of CSOs from SIDS in the UPR process. UPR Info regularly collaborates with CSOs, including the ones in SIDS to encourage them to engage more actively in the process. To this end, UPR Info has participated in several workshops organized by OHCHR focusing on SIDS. UPR Info also provides a vital space for CSOs and NHRIs of SIDS during the Pre-sessions. At the beginning of April, CSOs from Tonga, Barbados and Bahamas will be coming to Geneva to raise awareness of the human rights situation in their countries with the representatives of the Permanent Missions in Geneva.