The United Nations(UN)’s International Day in Support of Victims of Torture is annually observed across the globe on 26th June to create awareness and remind people that human torture is a crime against humanity.
- The day also calls out the stakeholders to unite in support of the millions of people around the globe who have been the victims of torture.
The day was established with a view to the total eradication of torture and effective functioning of the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
i.The United Nations General Assembly(UNGA) adopted the resolution A/RES/52/149 in December 1997 and proclaimed the 26th June of every year as United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture.
ii.The first-ever International Day in Support of Victims of Torture was observed on 26th June 1998.
Why June 26?
26th June marks the day on which the ‘Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment’ came into force.
- The convention was adopted on 10th December 1984 and came into force on 26th June 1987 after it had been ratified by 20 States.
- At present, the convention has been ratified by 162 countries.
i.According to the Convention, the term torture is defined as an act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted on a person for such purposes as obtaining from him or third person information or a confession.
ii.It does not include pain or suffering arising only from, inherent in or incidental to lawful sanctions.
UN Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture:
UN Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture is a unique UN operation that offers direct help to the victims of torture and their families.
The Fund established in 1981 by the UNGA focus on the global attention on the needs of torture victims.
- In 2022, the Fund awarded 181 annual grants for civil society organisations to implement projects for direct assistance to torture victims, for a total of USD 8,824,000.