(Image Tatoli/Nelson Sousa)

DÍLI, 6 october 2020 (TATOLI) – Timor-Leste Ministry of Justice has signed a tripartite agreement with a human right organisation based in Geneva, Switzerland to cooperate in the area torture prevention and bad treatment of citizens to ensure the equal treatment to all citizens.

Minister of Justice, Manuel Cárceres da Costa represented the Timorese Government in the signing of the agreement with, Jesuína Maria Ferreira, the Ombudsman for Human Rights and Justice and the Representatives of the APT.

The Minister of Justice, Manuel Cárceres said the cooperation established between Timor-Leste and the international organisation APT aims to eradicate torture and provide greater protection to society in general.

“The signing of a tripartite agreement aims to raise awareness among citizens to prevent torture and defend their honour,” Mr Cárceres said after the signing ceremony that took place in the Ministry of Justice building, in Caicoli, via videoconference.

He added, the policy of raising awareness is aimed at correctional officers, whose daily life is alongside prisoners, many of whom are vulnerable to becoming victims of torture.

The Ombudsman for Human Rights and Justice also stated that the agreement aims to strengthen national efforts to prevent torture and bad-treatment in society.

Jesuína Ferrera highlighted the importance of this agreement as a means to enrich the knowledge of the personnel assigned to the Ministry of Justice, in particular the correctional officers, the National Police of Timor-Leste (PNTL), the Falintil-Defense Forces of Timor-Leste (F-FDTL) to consolidate the prevention strategy.

She added that various activities would be carried out, such as digital consultation, through online surveys, and training proposals on the prevention of torture and ill-treatment.

The tripartite cooperation program will be implemented until 2023, and the Swiss Government will provide technical and legal assistance annually as well as granting a fund worth 30 thousand euros.

Journalist: Nelson de Sousa

Editor: Quito Simões/Nick Kettle

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