This document summarizes the discussions that took place at an event held at Chatham House on 21 January 2013. The discussion centred on General Comment No 3 on article 14 of the UN Convention Against Torture ('Convention Against Torture').
The first section provides an introduction to the relevant framework: the Convention Against Torture, the Committee Against Torture, and the General Comments. The second section outlines some of the more progressive aspects of General Comment 3, such as the definitions of victim and redress and the call for a gendered approach to be adopted by states parties. The third section reflects the discussion at the meeting and identifies two key issues – the specific problems faced by refugees and asylum speakers in obtaining redress for acts of torture; and the difficulties in obtaining state compliance with the convention, which were the subject of much debate at the meeting. The fourth section focuses on the drafting process of General Comment 3, including the Day of Discussion held in November 2011 at which states and NGOs expressed their opinions on the draft comment.