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Tuesday, 05 April 2016 17:31

NPC and Partners Visit Timor Leste

As part of its project Promoting Accountability and Preventing Torture by Strengthening Survivors of Torture in Asia, NPC and its partners Right to Life (R2L), Committee for Investigation of Disappeared (CID) and Human Rights Office Kandy (HRO Kandy) participated in a workshop, regional conference and exchange visit in Indonesia.

The project was implemented in Indonesia, Timor Leste, Myanmar and Sri Lanka by Asia Justice and Rights (AJAR) with the financial support from the European Union. The other partners were KontraS (Indonesia), AssociacaonChega Ba Ita (Timor Leste) and Wimutti Volunteer Group (Myanmar).

In Sri Lanka, the project centred on working with partner organisations to provide healing and legal support to victims of torture and psycho-social trauma suffered due to the war. At the national level, the project gave impetus to the Transitional Justice (TJ) initiative by organising well-attended training workshops on TJ.

The main objective of the workshop on “Empowering Survivors, Strengthening Accountability for Torture” was to assess the project implemented over 30 months from 2014 to 2016. The workshop included reviewing timelines and activities and their development throughout the project, identifying the most significant changes as a result of the project and assessing the partnership.

The experiences of the four countries and the difficult task in transitioning from authoritarian rule to democracy were shared during the workshop. How countries in the Asian region continue to deal with mass violations, including torture, and the impact of the conflicts in building societies based on the rule of law were discussed during the regional conference on “Are Transitional Justice Approaches Effective in Dealing with Mass Torture in Asia? Lessons from the Field, Strengthening Our Approach”.

The group also took part in the silent protest campaign held in front of the Presidential Palace in Jakarta every Thursday to commemorate victims of human rights abuses and to demand justice for them.

They then visited Timor Leste to study its TJ process and examine the current situation in the country.