5 Dec 2016

Fiji govt slates critical report on torture

8:37 pm on 5 December 2016

Fiji's government has reacted angrily to a report by Amnesty International which criticises the use of torture by the country's security forces.

Fiji's Finance Minister, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum.

Fiji's Finance Minister, Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum. Photo: Supplied

In a report released today, the organisation said people were still being violently assaulted by security forces that acted with relative impunity, highlighting several prominent cases.

However, in a statement, the attorney general Aiyaz Sayed-Khaiyum said the report was biased, selective and did not reflect the great strides that had been made to deal with torture.

Mr Sayed-Khaiyum said Fiji had ratified the United Nations convention against torture, and the prime minister and police commissioner have both said there was zero tolerance for torture.

He said successful prosecutions have been mounted, and the country was working hard to raise standards in the police force.

In its report, Amnesty did highlight the ratification of the UN convention and the prime minister and commissioner's comments - however, it said further action was needed to enforce these commitments.

It also said it spoke with several government representatives, but Mr Sayed Khaiyum said the director of public prosecutions was not contacted.

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