Latin American NPMs: looking towards change
The first working meeting of National and Local Preventive Mechanisms in Latin America took place in Panama 5-6 July, organised by the APT. The event brought together representatives of torture prevention mechanisms from Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Honduras, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru and Uruguay. A member of the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT) participated in the meeting.
Ten years after the entry into force of the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture (OPCAT), the meeting provided an opportunity to take stock of achievements and challenges in the effective implementation of the treaty in the region. While Latin American torture prevention bodies face a number of challenges, such as lack of resources and the need to ensure a legal basis, they have managed to position themselves as important actors for change in terms of culture and practices regarding deprivation of liberty.
During the meeting in Panama, NPMs and LPMs exchanged experiences, methodologies and good practices for the effective implementation of their recommendations. The participants expressed their desire to continue enhancing cooperation with different national and international actors, especially with civil society organisations.
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Photo: Maria Alejandra López