UN human rights office shocked by video of torture in Fiji

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Rupert Colville, UN Human Rights spokesperson

The United Nations human rights office has expressed shock over the content of a video showing the apparent torture and inhuman and degrading treatment of two handcuffed men in Fiji.

It says the video, which has emerged on social networks and the Internet, shows a handcuffed man being physically and sexually assaulted, beaten and humiliated by a group of men.

Rupert Colville, spokesperson for the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, says the handcuffed man is shown lying helpless in the back of a pick up truck.

"The terrified man is repeatedly struck on his feet, legs, body and head with a number of different implements including a length of rubber pipe, a metal rod, a stick and a hammer. Later in the video, which appears to have been taken on a cell phone, the same man is shown with his underwear removed. Subsequently some of his abusers force him to expose his genitals, while others film and photograph him. A second handcuffed man is shown sitting on the ground nearby and is also struck on his body, legs and head with a stick and a rod. A dog is encouraged by its handler to seize him by the shirt and drag him several metres across the ground." (35") 

Rupert Colville says the UN human rights office has welcomed the commitment made by the Fijian police authorities to establish the facts of this case.

It calls on the government to ensure that the apparent serious human rights violations are swiftly and effectively investigated by an impartial and competent authority and that the findings are made public.

It also urges the authorities to ensure that perpetrators, who are clearly visible in the video, are brought to justice and that a concerted effort is made to ensure that this type of treatment is not repeated.

Derrick Mbatha, United Nations

Duration: 1'58"

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September 2014
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