At its thirtieth session in May 2003 (A/58/44, para. 12), the Committee against Torture (CAT) adopted a new procedure to follow-up to its concluding observations. This procedure consists of identifying a limited number of recommendations as requiring additional information following the consideration of the State party’s report, as established under rule 68 of its Rules of procedure. The Committee identifies these recommendations (normally between three and six) because they are serious, protective, and are considered to be accomplished within a one year period (A/60/44, para. 115).
The States parties are requested to provide within one year information on the measures taken to give effect to these follow-up recommendations, which are clearly identified in a paragraph at the end of the concluding observations. The Committee is of the view that this follow-up procedure aims “to make more effective the struggle against torture and other cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment or punishment”, as articulated in the preamble of the Convention.
The Committee has appointed a Rapporteur on Follow-up to concluding observations under article 19 of the Convention (A/59/44, para. 15). When the follow-up information is provided, the Rapporteur will assess whether all the issues identified by the Committee for follow-up have been addressed and whether the information provided responds to the Committee’s concern and recommendations. Since this procedure was introduced, a large majority of States have provided the requested information.
To assess this information, the Rapporteur will consider all sources of information, as used when considering the report, including originating from other treaty bodies, special procedures and from the United Nations system as well as from regional human rights mechanisms, national human rights institutions (NHRIs) and non-governmental organizations (NGOs). In case further information is required, the Rapporteur sends a request for additional clarification. With regard to the States that have not supplied follow-up information, the Rapporteur will send reminders requesting the outstanding information.
At each session of the Committee, the Follow-up Rapporteur presents a progress report on the results of the procedure to the Committee, which can be found in the annual report. The follow-up information submitted by States parties, and the information received from other sources, as well as the Rapporteur’s letters, can be found below.