High Commissioner Navi Pillay hails National Preventive Mechanism during first visit to the Maldives

Monday, December 5, 2011

During the first visit by a UN High Commissioner for Human Rights to the Maldives, on 24 November 2011, Navi Pillay praised the National Preventive Mechanism against torture (NPM) in the following terms: "there have also been many advances, most notably a dramatic reduction in the incidence of torture, partly as a result of the setting-up of the National Prevention Mechanism within the Human Rights Commission of Maldives."

The High Commissioner also raised various issues of concern regarding the conditions of persons deprived of their liberty, and she called for a complete ban on flogging.

The APT has been providing support to the Maldives NPM since the establishment of this body in 2007 and contributed to the emergence not only of one of the only functioning NPMs in the Asia Pacific region, but also of one of the most dynamic NPMs around the world.

The dedicated team of young professionals involved in the NPM has developed a coherent and elaborated vision of their mandate, and have already contributed to substantial improvements in institutions responsible for persons deprived of their liberty in the Maldives. For example, the NPM has elaborated a toolkit on monitoring recommendations which facilitates the follow-up and implementation process by relevant authorities. This tool enables the NPM to identify and replicate key factors of success in the implementation of its recommendations.

The comments made by Navi Pillay during the press conference held in Malé come as a timely recognition of the relentless efforts made by members of the NPM and their parent institution the Human Rights Commission of the Maldives, to put a halt to torture.

For more information about Navi Pillay’s visit to the Maldives: http://ohchr.org/en/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=11641&LangID=E