The Ending Torture and Ill-Treatment of Women Project (EVAW), a project carried out by OXFAM in Pakistan, came to Istanbul for a study visit from 29 November – 3 December.
EVAW is an advocacy project that aims to change discriminatory laws and inform state officials in order to prevent violence against women that grows out of a patriarchal system.
Among the six participants who came from Pakistan for the study trip were a doctor, a journalist, a police officer, and civil society activists, four were women, and they visited with Turkish institutions who work to prevent torture and to provide treatment.
Through their visit, they met with TİHV (Human Rights Foundation of Turkey), TOHAV (Foundation for Social and Legal Studies), the Bureau for Legal Assistance Against Sexual Harrassment and Rape Under Custody, Taraf Newspaper, İHD İstanbul Branch (Human Rights Association) and CİSST(Civil Society Association in the Criminal Execution System). The topics in their meetings covered various forms of torture committed on the streets, in police stations, and in prisons; the process of constructing the Istanbul Protocol; the updates brought by the Optional Protocol to the Convention Against Torture (OPCAT); its practical strengths; and civil society’s struggle against torture.
In an assessment conducted in the Hafıza Merkezi office, the participants who attended the trip stated that they thought the trip was generally successful and that they wanted to maintain closer relationships with Turkish human rights advocates going forward.