Jordan: Legal safeguards needed to eradicate torture
AI considers that the continuing use in Jordan of prolonged pre-trial detention without prompt access to lawyers, independent doctors and relatives and without access to judicial review over the legality of detention remains inconsistent with international human rights standards and increases the risk of torture during the period immediately after arrest. The United Nations Human Rights Committee, at its fifty-first session in July 1994, expressed similar concerns and recommended reform of Jordanian law and practices. A number of allegations of torture have been made since Jordan acceded to the Convention against Torture and Other Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment on 13 November 1991. Such allegations are rarely subjected to independent and impartial investigations. During 1993 and 1994 political detainees were sentenced to death or imprisonment in trials before the State Security Court on the basis of confessions allegedly extracted after torture. AI welcomes two decisions of the Court of Cassation which found the verdicts of the State Security Court in two major cases unsound and overturned these verdicts. AI is additionally concerned about cases involving the refoulement of asylum-seekers over the last two years to countries where they may face torture, disappearance or the death penalty.