The Convention against Torture & Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment(external link) (CAT) was adopted and opened for signature, ratification and accession by General Assembly resolution 39/46 of 10 December 1984 and entered into force on 26 June 1987. New Zealand ratified the CAT on 10 December 1989.
New Zealand has made the following reservation to the CAT:
The Government of New Zealand reserves the right to award compensation to torture victims referred to in article 14 of the Convention Against Torture only at the discretion of the Attorney-General of New Zealand.
Upon ratification, the Government of New Zealand also made the following declaration under articles 21 and 22 of the CAT:
1. In accordance with article 21, paragraph 1, of the Convention, [the Government of New Zealand declares] that it recognises the competence of the Committee Against Torture to receive and consider communications to the effect that a State Party claims that another State Party is not fulfilling its obligations under the Convention; and
2. In accordance with article 22, paragraph 1, of the Convention, [the Government of New Zealand] recognises the competence of the Committee Against Torture to receive and consider communications from or on behalf of individuals subject to its jurisdiction who claim to be victims of a violation by a State Party of the provisions of the Convention.
The Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment was adopted on 18 December 2002 at the fifty-seventh session of the General Assembly of the United Nations by resolution A/RES/57/199 and entered into force on 22 June 2006. New Zealand ratified the Optional Protocol on 14 March 2007.
The Ministry of Justice is responsible for administering the CAT and its Protocol.
The CAT provides for:
The Optional Protocol to the CAT provides for:
Adopted on 12 May 2012, the United Nations Committee Against Torture made a decision concerning communoication No, 934/2019 under article 22 of the Convention. The committee can consider communications from those claiming to be victims of a violation. In this case Mr Richards, the complainant, made a communication on 13 March 2018 claiming a violation o his rights under articles 2, 10, 11, 12 and 13 ab 14. The committee found ar ticles 12, 13 and 14 of the Convention had been breached. The committee asked New Zealand to publish and disseminate the decision widely. A copy of the decision can be made here: attached [PDF, 372 KB]
Find out more
Read the latest reports relating to New Zealand, produced under the reporting procedure provided for by the Convention Against Torture & Other Cruel, Inhuman, Degrading Treatment or Punishment(external link).
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