Hand with writing on the palm that reads 'STOP TORTURE'
Hand with writing on the palm that reads 'STOP TORTURE'

Torture Prevention

The absolute prohibition of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment applies at all times, everywhere, with no exceptions. It is a cornerstone of the international human rights framework essential for the protection of human dignity.

Despite this, the practice of inflicting pain and suffering to punish, intimidate, or extract information persists worldwide, not just in hidden places of detention, but in prisons, police stations and in public spaces such as during protests. Those most affected, and often left with lasting trauma, include minorities, political dissidents and even children.

The deliberate infliction of pain and suffering for a particular purpose by state agents dismantles the foundation on which a state’s legitimacy rests – the rule of law and the protection of its people. Torture undermines confidence in law enforcement and justice systems, perpetuates cycles of violence and creates an atmosphere of fear. We urgently need to bridge the gap between legal prohibitions and real-world practices. Omega’s commitment to upholding the absolute prohibition of torture underpins much of our work:

  • Raising standards: We work to prevent torture by strengthening international standards on the use of force and restrictions on the trade in tools that can be used for torture.
  • Monitoring implementation: We train and advise detention and protest monitors, equipping them with the tools to document the use of force and related risk factors for torture.
  • Combatting impunity: Accountability for abuses committed contributes to the prevention of future abuses.  We build the capacity of judges, prosecutors and other legal professionals to apply international law and standards on torture and the use of force domestically. We also contribute technical inputs to strategic litigation.
  • Joining forces: Together, we are more than the sum of our parts. Omega works with partners across the globe to strengthen efforts to achieve a world free of torture and ill-treatment. We are one of six leading anti-torture organisations that form the United Against Torture Consortium.