International Secretariat

Victor Madrigal-Borloz

Victor Madrigal-Borloz

Secretary-General
International Secretariat Copenhagen

Victor Madrigal-Borloz has been associated with the IRCT since he was invited to chair the 2001 Council Meeting as an independent counsel. He continued to volunteer his services in this role for over a decade until his appointment as Secretary-General in 2013. Since then he has led the Secretariat in facilitating the development of a new strategy by the membership, supervised its implementation and ensured its continuous review. Throughout this period the IRCT affirmed its vision of full enjoyment of the right to rehabilitation for all victims of torture and ill treatment. A member of the UN Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture from 2013 to 2016, Mr Madrigal-Borloz was Rapporteur on Reprisals and oversaw a draft policy on the torture and ill-treatment of LGBTI persons. Prior to this he led technical work on numerous cases, reports and testimonies as Head of Litigation and Head of the Registry at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights and has also worked at the Danish Institute for Human Rights (Copenhagen, Denmark) and the Inter-American Court of Human Rights (San José, Costa Rica). In late 2017 the United Nations Human Rights Council appointed Mr. Madrigal-Borloz the Independent Expert on Violence and Discrimination Based on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity. In this capacity he assesses the implementation of international human rights law, raises awareness, engages in dialogue with all relevant stakeholders, and provides advisory services to help address violence and discrimination against LGBTI persons. Mr Madrigal-Borloz is a founding member of the Costa Rican Association of International Law (ACODI), a founding and current Board member of the International Justice Resource Centre (IJRC), and a founding and current Board member of Synergia-IDH.

Alexandre Leal de Freitas

Alexandre Leal de Freitas

Legal Associate (M&E)
International Secretariat Copenhagen

Alex is part of the organisational taskforce of 2017, responsible for supporting the mid-term review of the strategic plan and building a project-based structure for the organisation.  He is also leading the development and fundraising of a project for LGBTI victims of torture. Alex holds a Bachelor in Law and a Master‘s Degree in Human Rights and Democratisation. His professional experience includes working as a consultant for culture change in the private sector and the coordination of social projects with non-profit organisations. 

Asger Kjærum

Asger Kjærum

Director of Advocacy
International Secretariat Copenhagen

Asger is responsible designing and implementing the IRCT's advocacy strategy to make the right to rehabilitation a reality for torture victims around the world. He oversees a broad spectrum of interventions to promote change in public policy and legislation and supports proper investigation and documentation of torture at the national, regional and international level. Asger is regularly invited to speak on issues related to the implementation of torture victims’ right to rehabilitation and the Istanbul Protocol, development of advocacy capacities and effective engagement with UN mechanisms. As a Danish jurist, he has twelve years of experience working with implementation of human rights norms at the international and national level.

Gitte Sørensen

Gitte Sørensen

Executive Assistant
International Secretariat Copenhagen

As Executive Assistant, Ms Gitte Sørensen serves the IRCT Secretary-General and the governing bodies of the organisation. This includes responsibility for all logistics in relation to governance meetings and responsibility for managing meetings, travels and missions of the Secretary-General. Gitte has a Bachelor’s Degree in Modern Languages (English and French) and has been with the IRCT for 25 years. She previously worked in the EU Council of Ministers in Brussels and at the Canadian Embassy in Copenhagen.

Harry Shepherd

Harry Shepherd

Student Assistant
International Secretariat Copenhagen

As Communications Assistant, Harry works on "Output 5" focusing on governance, communications and branding, liaising with the various governance layers of the IRCT in order to improve effectiveness in how IRCT is structured and run. Harry has four years professional experience and previously worked as a Project Assistant on the Data in the Fight Against Impunity (DFI) Project. He has also worked for the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) Ghana Country Office and Vodafone Enterprise. Alongside his work at IRCT he is currently pursuing a Masters in Global Development with Public Health from The University of Copenhagen.

Inge Frandsen

Inge Frandsen

Finance and Procurement Officer
International Secretariat Copenhagen

As Finance and Procurement Officer, Inge is responsible for managing the financial reporting on IRCT projects and arranging flights for IRCT staff as well as IRCT members and other stakeholders participating in the organisation’s various project activities. Inge also manages IRCT procurements and other staff and admin related tasks. Inge has more than 25 years’ experience within accounting and administration in an international environment and holds a Certificate in Business Language from Copenhagen Business School.

Lisa Haagensen

Lisa Haagensen

Project Manager - GATE Project
International Secretariat Copenhagen

As Project Manager, Lisa is responsible for the delivery of the Global Anti-Torture Evidence (GATE) Project funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. Her responsibilities include coordinating the ongoing development of a unified clinical data collection system and managing the outputs from member organizations in Asia, Europe, Latin America, MENA, and Sub-Saharan Africa. She previously coordinated the implementation of the Data in the Fight Against Impunity (DFI) project. Before joining the IRCT, Lisa worked in the academic and non-profit sector in Johannesburg, London, and Beijing. She holds a BA (Hons) in Clinical Psychology, an MSc in Political Science and is currently completing an MSc in Development and International Relations/Global Refugee Studies at Aalborg University in Copenhagen.

James Lin

James Lin

Istanbul Protocol Programme Coordinator
International Secretariat Copenhagen

James leads the design and implementation of the IRCT’s programme to share its health-based knowledge on investigation and documentation of torture and to promote full implementation of the Istanbul Protocol (IP). His work includes undertaking advocacy on law and policy, case interventions, capacity development and IP training. He also coordinates the activities of the Independent Forensic Expert Group. James has over a decade of field experience working in conflict and post-conflict areas. Prior to the IRCT, he was Head of the Bangkok Regional Office for Southeast Asia of FIDH and Country Director for ABA ROLI’s offices in Nepal and Thailand. He has also held several posts in Bosnia-Herzegovina with the OSCE mission. James is a licensed attorney with a Juris Doctorate and a BA in Anthropology.

Miriam Reventlow

Miriam Reventlow

Director of Operations
International Secretariat Copenhagen

Miriam holds a masters’ degree in law and studied in Germany and South Africa. She has over a decade of experience in promotion of human rights and democracy. Before joining the IRCT she worked at the German Foreign Ministry, the German Red Cross and organisations in France and South Africa.

Rudolf Podkrivacky

Rudolf Podkrivacky

IT Student Assistant
International Secretariat Copenhagen

Rudolf supports the IRCT Secretariat with IT. His responsibilities include… He recently completed a Bachelor's Degree in Global Business Informatics and is currently studying a Master’s Degree in Bachelor's Degree in Global Business Informatics.

EU Liaison Office

Dastan Salehi

Dastan Salehi

Project Associate GATE Project
EU Liaison Office Brussels

As Project Associate, Dastan assists the implementation of the Global Anti-Torture Evidence (GATE) Project, funded by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands. He previously worked as Advocacy Associate at the IRCT Secretariat in Copenhagen and has work experience in the European Union as well as with IRCT member Freedom From Torture. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Dundee and a Master’s Degree from the University of Oxford.

Melissa Paintoux

Melissa Paintoux

European Affairs Officer
EU Liaison Office Brussels

As European Affairs Officer, Melissa advocates towards EU institutions for increased consideration of torture-related issues in EU internal and external policies. She is responsible for mobilising EU support and funding for IRCT projects and initiatives. In addition, she supports IRCT members in relation to their collaboration with EU institutions. Before joining the IRCT, Melissa worked in the refugee sector in France and the UK for several years. She managed projects and partnerships related to migrants' health and specialised in vulnerability and special needs issues. She also gained experience in public policy-making in Canada. Melissa holds a Master’s Degree in Conflict Analysis and Peacebuilding from Sciences Po Lille and a MSc in Global Migration studies from University College London.

Mushegh Yekmalyan

Mushegh Yekmalyan

Head of European Affairs
EU Liaison Office Brussels

Mushegh is responsible for the overall functioning of the IRCT office in Brussels including support to membership and Secretariat in fundraising activities. He is also in charge of advocacy, policy and partnership work with EU institutions in Brussels as well as regional organisations including OSCE and Council of Europe in wider European context. A holder of a LLM degree in International Law, Mushegh has over 15 years of experience in development work and human rights. He previously worked for Penal Reform International (PRI) and as a human rights officer at various OSCE missions. He has also worked for the Open Society Foundation as a policy projects coordinator, conducting policy research and advocacy work aimed at supporting the HRDs

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