If the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture ever came to visit Canada…

This past week or so the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture publicly stated that it would visit Australia, as one of six countries which the UN Subcommittee will visit in the coming months.

In a statement released on 1 July 2019 the UN SPT announced that Australia, Croatia, Lebanon, Madagascar, Nauru and Paraguay would comprise its future country visits.

challenge ahead
Prisons by -JvL- 2012

Like all current 90 States Parties to the OPCAT, Australia agreed to permit visits by this international body of 25 torture-prevention experts, after it ratified the instrument in December 2017.

Australia is also presently in the process of instituting a National Preventive Mechanism.

But what if Canada had also ratified the instrument? What might happen during a UN Subcommittee country visit? Where would it visit and with whom would it engage?

On 9 July the UN Subcommittee Chairperson, Professor Sir Malcolm Evans, was interviewed on Australia’s Radio National (RN) to explain the scope and form of such a country visit.

Listen to RN radio host Hamish Macdonald’s interview the UN SPT Chairperson, Professor Malcolm Evans, on the ins-and-outs of such a visit.


Read more about Australia’s path to OPCAT ratification.

Learn more about the role of civil society in the ratification process.

Read other recent academic articles on the implementation of the instrument in Australia.


Many thanks to Josef Szwarc for the above information.