Campaigners to back International Day in Support of Torture Victims

By staff writers
25 Jun 2008

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Campaigners are being urged to join Amnesty International's Stop Torture campaign, ahead of tomorrow's International Day in Support of Torture Victims.

The International Day in Support of Torture Victims is organised by the United Nations and takes place every year of 26th June.

It also comes as a new report by Amnesty International says that European governments have been complicit over US-led rendition and secret detention.

Torture is one of the most profound human rights abuses, taking a terrible toll on millions of individuals and their families. Rape, blows to the soles of the feet, suffocation in water, burns, electric shocks, sleep deprivation, shaking and beating are commonly used by torturers to break down an individual's personality. As terrible as the physical wounds are, the psychological and emotional scars are usually the most devastating and the most difficult to repair. Many torture survivors suffer recurring nightmares and flashbacks. They withdraw from family, school and work and feel a loss of trust.

In 2006, Amnesty International recorded cases of torture and ill-treatment in 102 countries. For over 45 years, Amnesty International has consistently campaigned against torture and for individuals at risk of torture - thousands of whom have subsequently been released.

Amnesty is a movement of 2.2 million people worldwide that campaign on a range of human rights issues. From ending situations like that in Darfur to bringing torturers to justice, members mobilise public opinion to put pressure on governments and others with influence like the UN to stop human rights abuses and to raise awareness of human rights atrocities.

Amnesty International does this by basing campaigning on thorough research and analysis, getting the information out through hundreds of reports each year, their members calling on governments to protect individuals, prevent abuses and change unjust laws and encouraging newspapers, radio, television and websites to cover human rights stories and ‘out’ human rights abusers.

If you want to speak out for human rights and make your voice heard, register your support now here.

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