Lebanese candidate Suzanne Jabbour won a seat Friday on the United Nations’ Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture.
Jabbour will join the subcommittee as a member for 2019-2022. The Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment is a treaty body in the United Nations human rights system.
Jabbour previously served as a member and vice president of the subcommittee from 2010 until 2016, and she is currently CEO of the Restart Center for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Violence, Torture, a Lebanese NGO that she founded in 2005.
From 2012 to 2016, she was also the president of the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims in Copenhagen.
Members of the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture (OPCAT) were convened by the Secretary-General at the United Nations Office at Geneva Thursday to elect thirteen members of the subcommittee.
The elected members will replace current members whose terms expire on Dec. 31, 2018.
Current members hail from different countries, including the United Kingdom, Croatia, Switzerland and Armenia.
Established in 2007, the SPT is composed of 25 independent experts from States parties to the OPCAT, serving in their individual capacity. The SPT mandate is unique within the United Nations, as its members have unrestricted access to any place of deprivation of liberty in States parties to the OPCAT – which includes prisons, police stations, as well as mental health and social care institutions – where they must be able to conduct private and confidential interviews with detainees. Based on these visits, the SPT issues recommendations to State authorities and National Preventive Mechanisms (NPMs); and work in close collaboration with them, as well as with other international, regional and national organisations and institutions on how to better prevent torture and other forms of ill-treatment.