UN Human Rights group cancels visit to Azerbaijan blaming authority obstruction

The UN Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture (SPT) has suspended a planned visit to Azerbaijan due to obstructions faced by the group caused by the Azerbaijani authorities.

The group, who planned to complete their work later this month, were prevented from visiting several facilities in which people of interest are detained and was also claim they were barred from working on other locations within Azerbaijan.

The group, which exist to prevent cruel punishment, torture and degrading activities were sent to Azerbaijan as part of a routine inspection to ensure that the state were following official protocol set up by the United Nations on the treatment of prisoners and detained individuals.

Work was officially suspended on the 14th of September after it was decided that the Azerbaijani authorities’ treatment of the situation made the team’s work impossible.

The team were granted the authority to inspect Azerbaijani facilities under the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (OPCAT), of which Azerbaijan is a party of.

This recent news however demonstrates Azerbaijan’s lack of commitment to the protocol, which disappointed UN officials and possibly indicates a breach of human rights that the authorities are looking to conceal.


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