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Culture of torture ‘remains dominant’ in Tunisian prisons

File photo
File photo

The culture of torture within Tunisia’s detention centres remains dominant, despite the evidence suggesting that it is not systematic, the Chairman of the Tunisian Human Rights League said on Wednesday. Nevertheless, Abdul-Sattar Ben Moussa still called for the security services and judicial institutions to be reformed.

Ben Moussa told Anadolu that 400 torture cases were registered in Tunisian prisons between October 2013 and October 2015. Freedom indicators have improved, he said, but not to the expected levels.

He made his comments at a press conference in Tunis to present the organisation’s annual report and to announce the Seventh National Conference for the League scheduled to be held for 3 days from 30 September.

The Tunisian authorities said that it had opened investigations into torture cases inside prisons, stressing that the reported cases were “one-offs”.

In May, the former Justice Minister Omar Mansour told the media during a visit to a women’s prison in Manouna, west of Tunis, that there were no systematic torture cases in the country. “If there were,” he said, “they were no more than maltreatment and offences carried out by some policemen in very rare circumstances.”