Jordan’s human-rights watchdog reports torture

Amman- The 2008 report released Saturday by Jordan’s state- funded National Centre for Human Rights (NCHR) found continued ‘torture’ at Jordanian jails and a retreat in public freedoms.

Anti-torture efforts in Jordan are still ‘modest and hesitant,’ the report said. The document was issued at a press conference by NCHR Trustees Council Chairman Adnan Badran and Commissioner General Mohieddin Touk.

‘There are drawbacks in the national campaign for ensuring the physical safety and preventing torture due to inadequate legislations, which most of the time enable those who commit the crime of torture to escape unpunished,’ the report said.

The NCHR also criticized the law that enables ‘administrative authorities to detain people without allowing them to have contacts with their families and lawyers,’ as well as the state security law that ‘permits the detention of suspects for seven days before referring them to the concerned judicial authorities.’

The centre reported ‘violations’ of human rights of detainees and an increase in riots at prisons.

The report praised the Public Security Directorate for its establishment of new detention centres, ‘which complies with international standards.’

The report was based on information from complaints by citizens and expatriates, regular and sudden field visits to places where violations of human rights are suspected of taking place, and reports by the media, Badran said.