Regional dimension important when addressing immigration detention

Monday, November 7, 2016

A three year cooperation project between the APT and the Asia Pacific Forum of National Human Rights Institutions (APF) ends on a high note this month. The final training course, held last week in Jakarta, focused on monitoring of immigration detention. It followed a series of activities to strengthen the torture prevention capacity of National Human Rights Institutions in the Asia Pacific region.

The so-called blended learning course – including an online and a face-to-face component – was a follow up to an earlier training on monitoring of immigration, organised in November 2015. Participants from four National Human Rights Institutions in Australia, Indonesia, Malaysia and the Maldives were selected to continue the training, based on their progress, interest and focus on immigration detention monitoring. The follow-up training was a direct response to participants’ recommendations and included a practical visiting exercise to an immigration detention centre in Kalideras.

The training gave participants an opportunity to deepen their understanding about preventive monitoring methodologies and how to address groups in specific situations of vulnerability, such as LGBTI persons. In a peer-to-peer approach, participants were asked to review each other’s action plans and discuss country developments around immigration detention. While it is crucial for National Human Rights Institutions to strengthen their institutional capacity and response to the detention of refugees and asylum-seekers, participants also stressed the importance of continued regional collaboration.

The APT/APF project is funded by the European Union.