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THE LAUNCH OF MALAYSIA YOUTH’S ACTION AGAINST TORTURE (MYACT) EXHIBITION

Updated: Jul 5

RE-IMAGINING A TORTURE FREE NATION


Press Release

27 June 2022


In commemoration of the United Nations International Day in Support of Victims of Torture on 26th of June, Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM) in collaboration with Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT) and Cross-Cultural Foundation (CrCF) launched an exhibition on torture prevention. The exhibition showcased 30 selected cartoons from a competition for Malaysian youths held in 2021. The exhibition aimed to inspire local artists and youths in Malaysia and Thailand to promote messages of torture prevention through hopeful visual narratives.


The activity is part of a 3.5-year project focusing on reducing risky practices leading to torture and ill-treatment in police custody in Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand.


In addition to the exhibition, other activities were also planned. This included live paintings with two renowned artists from Thailand and Malaysian, Tawan Wattutya and Zunar, a sharing of experience with a former detainee, a public conversation with Cross-Cultural Foundation (CrCF) Thailand on using art to prevent torture and finally a public forum on how to end torture in Malaysia by the anti-torture coalition #ACT4CAT. Suruhanjaya Hak Asasi Manusia Malaysia (SUHAKAM), Bar Council, Amnesty International Malaysia (AIM), Lawyers for Liberty (LFL) and Anti-Death Penalty Asia Network (ADPAN) also opened information booths for the event as a way to promote their own work on preventing torture.


“Re-imagining a Torture Free Nation” was chosen as the event’s theme to encourage the younger generation in Malaysia and Thailand to express their opinions creatively on the importance of preventing torture. The exhibition and related activities set a great example on how efforts to prevent torture can be communicated and addressed creatively.


SUARAM, CRCF and the APT would also like to take the opportunity to welcome the Malaysian government’s recent announcement to abolish mandatory death penalty. The announcement is a step in the right direction towards ensuring that all persons deprived of liberty, especially persons on death row are treated with respect and dignity. In addition to that, Malaysia’s efforts to be part of the upcoming 2022-2024 United Nations Human Rights Council is also seen as an opportunity for the country to invest more in policies and practices that guarantees everyone is safe in police custody.


Press enquiries: For media opportunities and information pertaining to the project, please be in touch with:

Kenneth Cheng

Documentation and Monitoring Officer

Suara Rakyat Malaysia (SUARAM)

documentation@suaram.net


About the APT

APT is a Swiss organisation based in Geneva with more than 40 years of experience in collaborating and accompanying government agencies, national human rights institutions, national preventive mechanisms, authorities and civil society organisations globally in their efforts to prevent torture. The APT has been cooperating with different partners in Malaysia, Philippines and Thailand over the last 10 years, particularly in national advocacy for UNCAT and OPCAT ratification and implementation, educating and raising awareness of different groups and communities on the importance of torture prevention. For more details about the APT, visit: https://www.apt.ch/en


About SUARAM

SUARAM has conducted extensive documentation, monitoring and advocacy work relating to police brutality, torture prevention and indefinite detention over the past 30 years. Apart from advocacy in this area, SUARAM is also the coordinating body for the Movement for the Abolishment of the Sedition Act 1948 (GHAH), organizer for Youth Internet Governance Forum 2019, Co-secretariat for Malaysian CSO Cluster for Reform and Co-Secretariat in the Coalition of Malaysian NGO in the UPR Process (COMANGO).SUARAM is also part of the national network coordinated by the National Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM) called ACT4CAT, a network that advocates for UNCAT ratification by Malaysia. SUARAM is also a member of regional and international organization including Forum-Asia (one of the founding member), Asian Alliance against Torture (A3T, one of the founding member), FIDH, OMCT and I4C. For more details about SUARAM, visit: https://www.suaram.net/


About CrCF

The Cross Cultural Foundation (CrCF) was founded in 2002. It works on justice and the protection, promotion and monitoring of human rights in Thailand. CrCF’s philosophy and activities are focused on strengthening human rights and delivering sustainable judicial reform throughout society. Particular emphasis is placed on marginalised people including ethnic minority groups, stateless people, migrant workers and the victims of conflict.


About #ACT4CAT

#ACT4CAT is a campaign co-initiated by SUARAM, alongside Human Rights Commission of Malaysia (SUHAKAM), Bar Council Malaysia, Amnesty International Malaysia and Lawyers for Liberty with the aim of advocating for the ratification of the Convention against Torture (CAT) as well as for the elimination of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment in Malaysia.


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