Human torture

Experimental visualization of narrower problems
Other Names:
Denial of right to freedom from torture

In many countries torture is used as a judicial instrument for extracting evidence and confessions from the accused. Individuals may inflict pain on other individuals for reasons of pleasure or vengeance. Individual torture includes acts of juvenile delinquency, such as the terrorizing and beating up of old or infirm people by gangs or individuals, or, for instance, the burning or humiliation of other young people who are not members of the group. Torture may be inflicted by sadists in an advanced state of mental disorder, or by 'protection' gangs and other organized crime units. Mental torture and less sophisticated means of physical torture may be practised within families or within a group of friends; this kind of torture may have a sexual basis. Individual torture may also be entered into under the effect of hallucinogenic drugs.


Dr. Manfred Novak, the U.N. Special Rapporteur on Torture, stated in 2014 that “torture in China is still wide-spread” and groups including Uyghurs and Tibetans “have been targets of torture”. A U.N. statement later said that over the years Chinese authorities have used electric shock batons, whips, hoods or blindfolds, needles and hot oil to torture prisoners alongside other forms of torture, such as sleep deprivation, water submersion and bodily mutilation.

International Federation of ACATs - Action by Christians for the Abolition of Torture
International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims (IRCT)
Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT)
Comité européen pour la prévention de la torture et des peines ou traitements inhumains ou dégradants (CPT)
Committee Against Torture (CAT)
Convention against Torture Initiative (CTI)
International Coalition to End Torture (ICET)
World Organisation Against Torture (OMCT)
African Centre for Treatment and Rehabilitation of Torture Victims (ACTV)
Center for Victims of Torture (CVT)
DIGNITY - Danish Institute Against Torture
International Association Against Torture (IAAT)
Convention Against Torture and other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
European Convention for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
Geneva Convention on Torture
Inter-American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture
African Centre for the Rehabilitation of Victims of Torture and Repression
Coalition of International NGOs Against Torture (CINAT)
Committee of Experts for the Prevention of Torture in the Americas (CEPTA)
Fonds international pour l'assistance aux victimes de la torture
Physicians Against Torture
Torture Survivors Network
Human Rights Watch (HRW)
Amnesty International (AI)
Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR)
Human Rights Information and Documentation Systems, International (HURIDOCS)
OSCE - Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (OSCE/ODIHR)
Defence for Children International (DCI)
Child Rights International Network (CRIN)
Related UN Sustainable Development Goals:
GOAL 1: No PovertyGOAL 4: Quality EducationGOAL 10: Reduced Inequality
Problem Type:
D: Detailed problems
Date of last update
04.10.2020 – 22:48 CEST