Event information

10 December 2021, 17:30-19:00
Register start 11 November 2021
Register end 9 December 2021

Downloads

Programme >

Ending Coercive Interrogation: The New Principles on Effective Interviewing for Investigations and Information Gathering

Event

apt logo large transparent 1

Ample scientific evidence shows that traditional interrogation methods are often unreliable and violate human rights, particularly when they result in forced confessions and miscarriages of justice.

Based on rigorous science and experience of criminal investigators, the new Principles on Effective Interviewing for Investigations and Information Gathering – also known as the Méndez Principles – provide guidance and solutions to States on moving away from confession based criminal justice systems, thereby reducing the risks of coercion, torture and ill-treatment.

The Principles are designed to protect the fundamental rights of persons suspected of crime as well as of victims and witnesses. Guided by the pursuit of truth and the operationalisation of the presumption of innocence, they enable the gathering of more reliable and accurate information and contribute to the respect of human rights in the administration of justice.

The Principles were finalized in May and officially launched on 9 June 2021, following a four years long expert-driven process, which was supported by the Association for the Prevention of Torture (APT), the Anti-Torture Initiative and the Norwegian Centre for Human Rights.

At this event – co-organized with the APT –,  experts, academics and practitioners will introduce and raise awareness on the new Principles and will discuss these four main issues:

  • Aims, purpose, process and main characteristics of the Principles
  • Interdisciplinary foundations of the Principles
  • Impact of the Principles on human rights protection and advancement
  • Implementation of the Principles, particularly from the perspective of National Human Rights Institutions.

Moderator

  • Pavle Kilibarda, Teaching Assistant, Geneva Academy, and PhD Candidate, Law Faculty, University of Geneva

Speakers

  • Barbara Bernath, Secretary General, Association for the Prevention of Torture;
  • Steven J. Barela, Associate Research Fellow, Geneva Academy of International Humanitarian Law and Human Rights;
  • Nils Melzer, UN Special Rapporteur on Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment and Swiss Human Rights Chair, Geneva Academy
  • Ruth Ssekindi, Director, Uganda Human Rights Commission.

MORE ON THIS THEMATIC AREA

Jean-Paul Nizigiyimana in front of the Mur des Réformateurs in Geneva News

MAS in Transitional Justice, Human Rights and the Rule of Law: What our Students Say

17 December 2021

Jean-Paul Nizigiyimana tells about his background, the programme and what it will bring to his career.

Read more

News

Engaging Policy Makers on Tech Regulation using the UNGPs

27 September 2021

To highlight the necessity of a human rights-based approach to regulatory efforts in the technology sector, we co-organized with the UN Human Rights B-Tech Project and the Centre for Democracy & Technology’s Europe Office a multi-stakeholder consultation attended by business, academia, civil society and state representatives.

Read more

Police officers during a demonstration Event

Discussion on the UN Guidelines for Lawyers in Support of Peaceful Assemblies

24 January 2022, 13:30-15:00

This event aims at promoting the use of the new Guidelines for Lawyers in Support to Peaceful Assemblies within legal professions.

Read more

An aerial view of camps for internally displaced persons (IDPs), which have appeared following latest attacks by M23 rebels and other armed groups in the North Kivu region of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC). Short Course

International Refugee Law

9 March - 13 April 2022

This short course, which can be followed in Geneva or online, analyses the main international and regional norms governing the international protection of refugees. It notably examines the sources of international refugee law, including the 1951 Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees, and their interaction with human rights law and international humanitarian law.

Read more

A general view of participants during of the 33nd ordinary session of the Human Rights Council. Training

The Universal Periodic Review and the UN Human Rights System: Raising the Bar on Accountability

November 2022

This training course will explore the origin and evolution of the Universal Periodic Review (UPR) and its functioning in Geneva and will focus on the nature of implementation of the UPR recommendations at the national level.

Read more

George Floyd protest in Washington D.C. Project

Promoting and Protecting the Rights to Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and Association and Civic Space Worldwide

Started in June 2020

This project aims at providing support to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Rights to Freedom of Peaceful Assembly and of Association Clément Voulé by addressing emerging issues affecting civic space and eveloping tools and materials allowing various stakeholders to promote and defend civic space.

Read more

Project

HUMAN RIGHTS, BIG DATA AND TECHNOLOGY PROJECT

Started in May 2016

We are a partner of the Human Rights, Big Data and Technology Project, housed at the University of Essex’s Human Rights Centre, which aims to map and analyse the human rights challenges and opportunities presented by the use of big data and associated technologies. It notably examines whether fundamental human rights concepts and approaches need to be updated and adapted to meet the new realities of the digital age.

Read more

Cover of the publication Publication

Regulatory Approaches to Online Harms and Human Rights: Three Case Studies

published on January 2022

Ana Beduschi

Read more