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Professor Malcolm Evans re-elected chair of largest human rights treaty body in UN

Professor Malcolm Evans, OBE

Professor Malcolm Evans, OBE

Press release issued: 26 February 2013

Malcolm Evans, OBE, Professor of Public International Law at the University, has been re-elected to chair the United Nations (UN) Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT). The SPT derives its mandate from the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture. It is a multidisciplinary body of independent experts with 25 members and is the largest of the UN human rights treaty bodies.

Malcolm Evans, OBE, Professor of Public International Law at the University, has been re-elected to chair the United Nations (UN) Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT). The SPT derives its mandate from the Optional Protocol to the UN Convention against Torture.  It is a multidisciplinary body of independent experts with 25 members and is the largest of the UN human rights treaty bodies.

Professor Evans, has been a member of the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture since 2009 and its Chair since February 2011. He has been re-elected by his fellow members to serve as Chair until February 2015.

The SPT, which has been operational since February 2007, has a preventive mandate and employs a number of strategies to lessen the likelihood of persons deprived of their liberty being ill-treated, be it in the criminal justice system, immigration detention, mental health institutions, care homes or elsewhere.  The SPT undertakes field visits to places of deprivation of liberty in the States Parties, of which there are currently 67.  The SPT also advises and assists States in the establishment of National Preventive Mechanisms and engages with them in order to help develop their work. The SPT co-operates also with other international, regional and national bodies and agencies engaged in activities related to the prevention of torture.

Professor Malcolm Evans from the University of Bristol Law School said: “It is an honour to have been re-elected Chair of the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture. There is of course, a great deal to do, as the mistreatment of detained persons continues to be a distressingly common phenomenon.”