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The current definition of torture used within the UK is that of the International Criminal Court: "'Torture' means the intentional infliction of severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, upon a person in the custody or in the control of the accused..."
For the full statute see:

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:55]

The British Government (Home Office) definition of torture

The Home office is still quoting the United Nations definition, from the UN Convention against Torture, which says: " any act by which severe pain or suffering, whether physical or mental, is intentionally inflicted by or at the instigation of a public official on a person for such purposes as obtaining from his or a third person a confession, punishing him for an act that he has committed or is suspected of having committed, or intimidating him or other persons..."

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:56]

Human Rights Internet

The UN Convention and other relevant documents background information (scroll down to find children's section) can be found on the human rights internet.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:56]

United Nations

Wide range of information concerning the UN can be found on their web site in languages including English, Arabic, Chinese, Spanish, Russian and French.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:56]

The World Medical Association (WMA)

The WMA prohibits medical professionals from involvement in torture. Also see Physician Participation in Torture (June 2004).

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:57]

The British Medical Association: ethical and general medical advice on torture

The BMA have detailed advice.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:57]

Members of the Council of Europe

The Council of Europe complies with the European Convention on Human Rights, under the jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights. See link below.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:57]

The Human Rights Act

The Human Rights Act 1998 incorporates the ECHR into British legislation.
The Act can be found at:

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:57]

Amnesty International

The AI site also has a lot of relevant information about torture and its prohibition, including much that is relevant to health professionals. See monthly update for June 2003 -The Wire - Combating torture :a manual for action.

Link [Last update: 2006-01-13; 12:58]

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