05 Apr 2016
IRCT receives German grant to promote documentation and rehabilitation for torture victims in the Philippines

The IRCT is pleased to announce that it has received a grant from the government of Germany to work with one of its members in the Philippines the Medical Action Group (MAG) to promote implementation of the national anti-torture law in the areas of documentation and rehabilitation of torture victims.

IRCT receives German grant to promote documentation and rehabilitation for torture victims in the Philippines

Secretary General, Mr Victor Madrigal-Borloz

Through advocacy and technical assistance, the IRCT and MAG will support and enhance efforts to establish a government run rehabilitation programme for torture victims and build national capacity among health and legal professionals to document allegations of torture.

For the past six years that the national anti-torture law has been in effect, the IRCT, its national partners and many other civil society actors have been pushing for its effective implementation through technical assistance initiatives and by documenting and bringing individual cases to court. This week, a case pursued by Amnesty International saw the first successful prosecution for torture in the national courts, which raises expectations than improved documentation will lead to justice for more victims.

However, while successful prosecution is an important step for most victims, they still need rehabilitation for the physical and psychological scars inflicted on them. A national rehabilitation programme is already well established in law but victims will only get their legally entitled support once it becomes reality through budgetary appropriations and practical implementation across the Philippines.

The IRCT is very pleased that the Government of Germany continues to support its efforts to promote rehabilitation and documentation with its members in their national jurisdictions and it expects that the experience in the Philippines will provide valuable lessons on helping victims obtain justice and rehabilitation in Asia and globally.

“Healthcare professionals have a very important role to play in creating a world without torture as those who help mitigate the physical and psychological pain faced by victims of torture.” - Dr. Yadira Narvaez

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