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COMMITTEE ON ENFORCED DISAPPEARANCES REVIEWS THE REPORT OF ITALY

9 April 2019

Committee on Enforced Disappearances today concluded its consideration of the initial report of Italy on measures taken to implement the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.

Gian Lorenzo Cornado, Permanent Representative of Italy to United Nations Office at Geneva, reiterated the importance that his country attached to the constructive dialogue with the Committee on Enforced Disappearances.

Fabrizio Petri, President of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for Human Rights of Italy, introducing the report, recalled that the promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the fight against racism and for the rights of women and children, constituted the fundamental pillars of both domestic and foreign policies of Italy.  No arbitrary conduct against fundamental liberties was allowed by the Italian legal system.  In this context, Mr. Petri mentioned the measures to counter terrorism which contained fundamental legal safeguards as laid down by the Constitutional system of procedural guarantees, of which the right to defence was one.  The Constitution in its article 13 guaranteed the inviolability of personal liberty except by order of the judiciary.  Despite the lack of the autonomous crime of enforced disappearance in the penal code, Italy deemed that its article 605 and the variety of aggravating circumstances, as well as other criminal conducts envisaged by the legislator, already covered this crime comprehensively.  At the beginning of 2017, all judicial psychiatric hospitals had been closed and replaced with facilities for the implementation of security measures, where regional authorities cared for each internee. 

In the discussion that followed, Committee Experts stressed the critical importance of respecting both the spirit and the letter of the Convention in ensuring protection from the heinous crime of enforced disappearance.  This required Italy to align its definition of this crime with the Convention and above all, ensure that its legislation contained an autonomous crime of enforced disappearance.  According to the legislation in force, an abduction committed by a public official was an aggravated circumstance, but for the Committee, this was the very essence of the crime of enforced disappearance, the Experts stressed.  Furthermore, Italy must ensure that counter-terrorism and anti-mafia legislation did not provide for the derogation of protection from enforced disappearance.  Turning to the migration crisis, the Experts reiterated the fundamental importance of the application of article 16 of the Convention on non-refoulement of all those who were victims of enforced disappearance or who were at risk of enforced disappearance if returned to their countries of transit or origin.  Concerns remained about the practice of forcible return of irregular migrants, including unaccompanied migrant children, and the lack of procedures for the identification of vulnerable persons among refugees and asylum-seekers, including victims of enforced disappearance. 

In his concluding remarks, Koji Teraya, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, urged Italy to engage with civil society organizations on this review and the issues raised.

Moncef Baati, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, reiterated the shared goal which was the appropriate implementation of the Convention, identifying good practices, and correcting weaknesses. 

Mr. Petri in his concluding remarks said that the Convention touched human dignity and the meaning of humanity and Italy was in the process of understanding the Committee’s efforts to turn it into the reality for the international human rights system.

Suela Janina, Committee Chairperson, said that the concluding observations aimed to advance the implementation of the Convention in all States parties and to set up preventive mechanisms and safeguards, which was urgent given the re-emergence of enforced disappearance around the world.

The delegation of Italy consisted of representatives of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for Human Rights, Ministry of Justice, Ministry of Defence, National Guarantor for the rights of persons detained or deprived of liberty, and the Permanent Mission of Italy to the United Nations Office at Geneva.

The Committee will issue the concluding observations on the report of Italy at the end of its sixteenth session on 18 April.  Those and other documents relating to the Committee’s work, including reports submitted by States parties, can be found on the session’s webpage.  The webcast of the Committee’s public meetings can be accessed at http://webtv.un.org/.

The Committee will next meet in public at 3 p.m. this afternoon to review the initial report of Chile (CED/C/CHL/1).

Report

The Committee has before it the initial report of Italy (CED//ITA/1) as well as its replies to the list of issues (CED/C/ITA/Q/1/Add.1).

Presentation of the Report

GIAN LORENZO CORNADO, Permanent Representative of Italy to United Nations Office at Geneva, reiterated the importance that his country attached to the constructive dialogue with the Committee on Enforced Disappearances and then introduced the delegation.

FABRIZIO PETRI, President of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for Human Rights of Italy, introducing the report, recalled that the 1948 Italian Constitution envisaged the protection of all rights and fundamental freedoms included in relevant international standards, including the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance.  The promotion and protection of all human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the fight against racism and for the rights of women and children, constituted the fundamental pillars of both domestic and foreign policies of Italy. 

No arbitrary conduct against fundamental liberties was allowed by the Italian legal system.  In this context, Mr. Petri mentioned the measures to counter terrorism which contained fundamental legal safeguards as laid down by the Constitutional system of procedural guarantees, of which the right to defence was one.  Furthermore, there was the principle of ‘double level of adjudication’ characterized by three different levels of trial, the principle of due process of the law, the role of the Constitutional Court, the mandatory prosecution, and the inviolability of personal liberty as defined by article 13 of the Italian Constitution.  This article prescribed that no one could be detained, inspected, searched or otherwise subjected to any restriction of personal liberty except by order of the judiciary.

Despite the lack of the autonomous crime of enforced disappearance in the penal code, Italy deemed that its article 605 and the variety of aggravating circumstances, as well as other criminal conducts envisaged by the legislator, already covered this crime comprehensively.  At the beginning of 2017, Italy had finally closed all judicial psychiatric hospitals and replaced them with facilities for the implementation of security measures (REMS), where regional authorities cared for each internee.   

All initial training for judicial and law enforcement personnel, including carrabinieri, contained a module on the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, while the Observatory for Security against Acts of Discrimination had trained more than 11,000 officers and cadets in its area of competence.  Specific draft legislation on the establishment of the national human rights institution was being debated within the Constitutional Affairs Commission of the Senate.  The Italian national prevention mechanism under the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture with a full-fledged independent mandate had been in place since 2016.
 
Questions by the Committee Experts

KOJI TERAYA, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, recognized Italy’s leading role in the promotion and protection of human rights.  The report, noted the Co-Rapporteur, was silent on the involvement of civil society - and the national prevention mechanism in particular - in its preparation and asked to what extent Italy gave space to civil society to express their views on the draft report.  As for the status of the Convention in the domestic legal order, Italy claimed that it was not compatible and said that it held similar legal status to the European Convention on Human Rights.  Who decided on the incompatibility of international human rights treaties with the domestic legislation, how were such situations resolved, and how did the legal status of the Convention compare with that of the European Convention on Human Rights? 

As for the anti-terrorism and anti-mafia law, the Co-Rapporteur remarked that war and other emergency situations were often used as a justification for the suspension of law and in this context reiterated the non-derogability of the protection from enforced disappearance. 

Italy did not have a comprehensive prohibition of the crime of enforced disappearance in its legislation, Mr. Teraya said and raised concern that the simple enumeration of a criminal act could not capture the full scope of enforced disappearance.  The lack of the provision for an autonomous crime became even more problematic when a crime of enforced disappearance represented a crime against humanity.  Sentences for the crime were too light and it was not clear what sentencing guidelines applied.

Stressing the fundamental importance of a legal recourse available to subordinates against possible disciplinary measures for having refused to carry out an illegal order by a superior, the Co-Rapporteur asked the delegation to explain Italy’s position on this.

MONCEF BAATI, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, remarked that the definition of enforced disappearance in the Italian legal order was not fully compatible with the Convention.  Italy had adopted two pieces of legislation on the matter, one in 2017 and another in 2018, which would only enter into force in 2020.  Why the delay and why two separate pieces of legislation?  The report had stated that “most of the Convention’s provisions” had been included in the national law, but “most” did not mean “all”, said the Co-Rapporteur and asked the delegation to explain.  How was the consent of the detained person obtained?

The basis for extradition was provided for in the Code of Criminal Procedure but it did not seem to be systematically applied.  How was Italy cooperating with States not parties to the Convention on extradition matters and under which conditions did it extradite their citizens.

Other Experts raised concern about missing migrant children in Europe and that European authorities did not know the whereabouts of between 10,000 to 50,000 such children.  Recalling the obligation of all parties to the Convention to search for the missing, the Experts asked the delegation to outline the relevant legal framework and the body or authority that had the mandate to search for missing migrants, including children.  As far as extraterritorial obligations were concerned, did those include the operations by the Italian navy?

Replies by the Delegation

Italy had decided not to involve civil society organizations in the drafting of the report because, as the initial report, Italy wanted it to be broad in scope.  A dialogue had been held three weeks ago with civil society organizations, e.g. Amnesty International and Médecins Sans Frontières, after the submission of the report, which would continue following Italy’s review by this Committee.  As Italy did not have a national human rights institution, the authorities were investing efforts to empower civil society organizations and engage them in a constructive dialogue and relationship. 

At the moment, the legislation on the setting up of a national human rights institution was in the Chamber of Deputies, while a self-governing group of Italian human rights academics had been created; they were advocating for the establishment of a national human rights institution and were providing expert support to parliamentarians in this process.
 
With regard to the status of the Convention in the domestic legislation, the delegation explained that according to the constitutional rule, the legislative power of the State and the regions was exercised in line with the Constitution, European law, and international obligations.  This rule was being continuously interpreted by the Constitutional Court and where a domestic legal provision contravened an international law, domestic legislation was considered not compliant with the Constitution.  It was up to the Constitutional Court to assess whether domestic legislation was in line with international treaties.  That was why rules under the Convention that were in conflict with national legislation could be invoked in court.

In response to the questions related to the derogation from the Convention in the prosecution of cases of terrorism, the delegation explained that Italy had an important history of terrorism as it had been strongly affected by left- and right-wing terrorism in the 1970s.  Following the 9/11 attacks, Italy had revised its legislation in order to foster international cooperation on counterterrorism.  The legislation did not provide for any derogation of fundamental human rights and the code of criminal procedure which provided for fundamental legal safeguards applied.

Italy believed that the existing national legislation provided ample protection from enforced disappearance, such as article 605 on false imprisonment or article 607 on abuse of authority against persons in custody, which covered basic elements of the crime of enforced disappearance.  The penalty provided for the offence of deprivation of liberty by an official was one to 10 years’ imprisonment and there were certain aggravating circumstances that could extend the sentence, for example concealing the whereabouts of a person.  Furthermore, the crime of abduction, present in the Italian legislation, corresponded to a certain degree to the articles 1 and 2 of the Convention.  An abduction by a military person was sentenced with 12 years in prison, and 15 years if the victim was a minor.

As for the responsibility of superiors, the Italian legal system, and specifically article 10 of the criminal code, enabled a kind of equation between the participants in the commission of the crime, thus ensuring that all were tried and convicted.  The sentences were defined based on the role played in the commission of the crime: the promoters, those who planned, instigated, or ordered the crime, would receive a higher sentence than those who had a minor role.  The roles in the commission of the crime were evaluated post facto, or after the crime occurred.  Notable cases in this respect included the Abu Omar case, in which many participants, including from the carrabinieri and the military, had been tried and convicted for abduction.  In the so-called Caso Condor, all the participants had been tried and convicted for participation in the disappearance and murder of a series of Italian nationals who had lived in Latin American countries that at the time had been under dictatorship, i.e. Argentina and Uruguay.

Carrabinieri, or the State police, had a special status in the law given their special role which combined the maintenance of public law and order but also the participation – like the army and the navy - in military operations abroad, for example peacekeeping.  But because they were not military, the military code did not apply.  The military code in war applied when a state of war was officially declared or when the Italian army was engaged in operations where force was being used.  On the other hand, the military criminal code in peace time provided for the case of capture of hostages and referred to military servicemen. 

Bilateral treaties on extradition always provided for cases where extradition could not be refused.  Extradition could also be approved by the State based on national interests, and those could be challenged in court.  Reciprocity applied but it was up to the Ministry of Justice to decide whether to provide assistance in extradition matters or to reject assistance if the offence in question was not on Italian books.  Witness protection was regulated by a comprehensive and complex piece of legislation which provided for a range of gradual measures.  The extradition of nationals was prohibited by the Constitution in the absence of bilateral or multilateral agreements; Italy extradited its nationals frequently and rendered them to authorities of countries such as Switzerland or the United States.

With regard to the missing migrant children, the department of juvenile justice did not have the mandate to search for them.  The delegation would contact the High Commission of the Government of Italy for Missing Persons and submit more information on this issue in writing.  A detained foreigner was informed at the time of the arrest of his or her right to contact the consular services of the country of origin.  The national prevention mechanism against torture had been operational since 2016 and served to strengthen the respect for fundamental legal safeguards which also served to prevent enforced disappearance.

Questions by Committee Experts

In the next round of questions, KOJI TERAYA, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, welcomed the explanations which seemed to indicate that the Convention could be directly applied in the national legal order and asked the delegation to confirm if the anti-mafia legislation reaffirmed the principle of non-derogation of the protection from enforced disappearance. 

MONCEF BAATI, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, appreciated the delegation’s extensive answers which were in the spirit of a constructive dialogue and said that the act of passing a law served as an educational moment for the citizens and authorities.  That was why it was important for the laws to be written in a clear language that would facilitate the grasp of the seriousness of the crime, he said, and reiterated the importance of ensuring an autonomous crime of enforced disappearance.  Mr. Baati said that for Italy, an abduction committed by a public official was an aggravated circumstance, but for the Committee, this was the very essence of the crime of enforced disappearance.  Commenting on the role of the Minister of Justice in the interpretation of the law, the Co-Rapporteur remarked that this amounted to interference with the rule of law and the systematic and consistent application of the criminal code.

Other Experts stressed the critical importance of respecting not only the letter but the spirit of the Convention, including the definition of the crime of enforced disappearance, and remarked that the legislation in Italy as it stood did not adequately cover this crime, which was a crime against human dignity and a violation of the fundamental right to life.  All acts of enforced disappearance must be expressly prohibited in order to bring forward the specificity and utter gravity of this crime, which could not be covered by notions of murder or abduction.  Furthermore, Italy was a member of the International Criminal Court which recognized the crime of enforced disappearance and this already served as a recognition of the crime, but another step was needed to include it in the books.

Was there a law that obliged the State to include civil society organizations in law and policy drafting processes, asked the Experts, and if not, could the delegation explain the criteria on the basis of which the State decided to include civil society organizations in such processes.

Replies by the Delegation

The Inter-Ministerial Committee for Human Rights, although a governmental institution and thus not independent, was trying to fill the void felt by the lack of a national human rights institution by including civil society organizations.  The efforts to involve civil society in the reporting process under and compliance with the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance would continue after this dialogue, and the Committee’s concluding observations would be translated into Italian and disseminated to non-governmental organizations in order to further empower them.  There was no legislation that obliged this dialogue which nevertheless was a good practice among the Government ministries and agencies.  Parliament held many auditions for non-governmental organizations and civil society organizations of all vocations.

The delegation reiterated that according to the law, it was not possible to derogate from fundamental human rights and freedoms, including in anti-mafia cases, anti-terrorism cases, or in situations of war.  There was no justification in the law for enforced disappearance.  Military servicemen who had received a manifestly illegal or criminal order did not have an obligation to obey and had a duty to report the case to a superior authority.

The law on the statute of limitations, which would enter into force on 1 January 2020, defined that after the first instance of judgement, the limitation would be suspended for the whole duration of the criminal procedure.  The delay in the entry into force was due to the need to amend the criminal code accordingly.

In 2017, law N°47 had been adopted on the protection of foreign unaccompanied children, the first of its kind in the world, which provide resources for the care of such children and introduced a figure of tutor, appointed by the Independent Authority on Minors.
There was a two-step extradition procedure, one by judicial authorities and another by the Minister of Justice.  The extradition to European Union Member States was done on the basis of the European Arrest Order, which was automatic and in which the Minister of Justice did not have a role.  The Minister played a role in extradition to non-European Union States, particularly in the process of the mutual recognition of judgements and judicial orders.

Questions by Committee Experts

KOJI TERAYA, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, raised concern about the non-respect of the principle of non-refoulement, given the practice of forcible return of irregular migrants.  Procedures were lacking for the identification of the vulnerable among refugees and asylum-seekers, including victims of enforced disappearance.  What was the policy concerning the list of safe countries?  In terms of the prompt access to legal counsel, the Co-Rapporteur asked about the availability of translators of minority languages and access to legal aid, particularly for non-nationals.  The Committee against Torture had raised concern about the lack of a systematic recording of all detentions, Mr. Teraya remarked, and asked who had access to all places of detention in Italy.  What was the content of training for the penitentiary authorities and officials, including on the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance – this was essential to prevent enforced disappearance, the Co-Rapporteur remarked.

MONCEF BAATI, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, addressed the question of protecting children from enforced disappearance and remarked that the definition of a victim in Italian legislation did not meet the criteria of the Convention.  The return of minors under the age of 18 was prohibited, but there were cases in which unaccompanied foreign minors were sent back, the Co-Rapporteur remarked, and asked the delegation under which conditions or in which cases this occurred, and also asked for an explanation of the assessment of an unaccompanied minor and the procedure that guaranteed that a child was returned to his or her family.  The right to truth was an essential component of the non-repetition of the heinous crime of enforced disappearance, Mr. Baati stressed, and asked how this right was provided for and who benefitted from it.

Other Experts expanded on the question raised on the definition of a victim and noted the recent decision of the European Court for Human Rights that had defined that those who were waiting to learn the fate of their loved ones were also victims given the prolonged nature of their suffering.  The Convention had set minimum standards in terms of the definition of a victim and all States parties were free to adopt a broader definition and guarantee a greater scope of rights to a victim.  The Experts stressed the linkages between human trafficking and enforced disappearance and asked whether the anti-trafficking policies took into account a possibility that among victims of human trafficking there might be victims of enforced disappearance as well.

SUELA JANINA, Committee Chairperson, referred to the ongoing migrant crisis and the return of migrants from Italian territorial waters, and stressed in this context the critical importance of article 16 of the Convention on non-refoulement of all those who were victims of enforced disappearance or who were at risk of enforced disappearance if returned to their countries of transit or origin.  In this context, the Chair asked the delegation to explain not the political considerations but the legal basis for the refusal of entry into Italian ports to boats carrying migrants, as had occurred with the Italian coastguard ship Ubaldo Diciotti or the ship belonging to the non-governmental organization Sea Watch.  What was the reaction of the Italian courts?

Replies by the Delegation

The delegation said that updated information on the collective refoulement of migrants would be provided in writing within 24 hours.  The judgement of the European Court of Human Rights had not found Italy in breach of Protocol Four of the Geneva Convention on collective punishment.    

The principle of non-refoulement was enshrined in the Constitution which guaranteed a broader scope of protection than the Geneva Convention.  Extradition was not granted when a defendant or a convict might be subjected to persecution, discrimination, inhuman treatment, or particularly severe penitentiary measures.  A suspicion that a person could be subjected to enforced disappearance led to the denial of extradition regardless of any other considerations.  Italy had a wide range of information sources that judicial authorities could resort to in order to assess the allegations of a person that he or she could be subjected to grave human rights violations.  Italy accepted diplomatic assurances concerning sanctions and penitentiary measures and conditions in the country of extradition, however, diplomatic assurances were not accepted in cases based on human rights conventions.

If requirements for asylum were not met, a procedure was in place where judicial authorities played a significant role.  A foreigner, including those who entered illegally, could request asylum or international protection, and the risk he or she carried for enforced disappearance in countries of origin was one of the grounds for granting international protection.  The Commission for the Recognition of International Protection had been established throughout the country and operated under the guidelines and supervision of the National Commission for Asylum.  The decision made by the Territorial Commissions could be challenged in court within 30 days.  Each provincial court of appeal had a special ad hoc unit specialized in asylum matters, which put in place information-sharing networks with experts on countries of origin of asylum seekers, who provided an expert assessment of the situation in the country.  Decisions were made by a three-member panel composed of judges, whose decision could be challenged before the Court of Cassation.  The decision by this court was final.

Italy did not have a list of safe countries with regard to extradition procedures, but in matters of requests for asylum, a list would be created based on the criteria that included human rights legislation and its effectiveness.  Asylum seekers were able to claim that the return to their countries was not safe.  All those appearing before the criminal court had a right to court-provided free of charge translation into their language.

The national prevention mechanism, the National Guarantor for the rights of persons detained or deprived of liberty, had been fully operational since March 2016.  It had unrestricted access to all detained persons, both de iure and de facto, and to all places to detention throughout the national territory, including vessels, hotspots, and social and welfare homes.  Law decree N°113 of 2018 on irregular migrants had widened the list of places in which foreign nationals could be forced to stay for the purpose of expulsion.  Judicial authorities could approve the temporary stay of foreign migrants in “suitable facilities”, i.e. police units, for a period of time.  The problem was that this decision opened up the space for arbitrary detention of foreign nationals in unofficial places of detention which were decided upon by the judiciary.  The list of those places of detention was not available, but the decision was not being applied as yet.

A Department for Training had been set up in 2016 in the Ministry of the Interior which provided training to penitentiary staff, in charge of both adults and juveniles, and there were nine-month training courses inspired by the Constitution, penitentiary standards and regulations, and European and other international conventions.  The International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance would be included in the forthcoming training for new officers and incorporated into continuing education courses.  The basic training courses provided by the military penitentiary administration had a specific approach to human rights and humanitarian protection training, and it included the provisions of the Convention.  The armed forces had a legal adviser who provided advice and awareness raising on Italian humanitarian protection law and international standards and obligations.

A victim was a person who suffered an offence or harm arising from that offence.  The legislation provided for various forms of redress to victims, and included material and moral damages, restoration of dignity, the right to non-repetition, and other forms of restitution.  Returning to the case of Abu Omar which involved enforced disappearance and arbitrary deprivation of liberty, the delegation said that both Abu Omar and his wife were considered victims and had the right to the compensation for damage suffered.  The court had found that the human rights violations was extremely serious, both in terms of material and moral damages, and had awarded €1 million in compensation.

Legislation concerning adoptions had been revised in 2001 and provided for a heavy involvement of the judiciary in the procedure.  Parents were eligible for legal aid and were appointed defence lawyers, while minors were assisted by a guardian, or a special curator if there was a conflict between the minor and the parents.  The declaration of adoptability was issued after a complex legal process in which the state of abandonment of the child - national and foreign alike – had to be proven.

Turning to the case of the Italian coastguard ship Ubaldo Diciotti in which 177 migrants had been prevented from disembarking in Sicily, the delegation said that the Italian judiciary had taken immediate action and had decided that the Deputy Prime Minister and the Interior Minister of Italy Matteo Salvini should be charged with the offences of kidnapping and the abuse of office.  The delegation explained the special procedure in place for ministers who committed an offence in the course of duty, who were judged by a specialized ordinary court, the court of ministers, made up of judges chosen by a ballot.  An authorization by a chamber to which the Minister belonged was needed, the Senate in this case, which had assessed that the offence had been committed in the course of duty for political reasons.

In follow-up questions, the Experts said they were “puzzled by the contradiction” between the news in the international and national media and the content of Italy’s report and statements made by the delegation concerning the principle of non-refoulement.  The Italian Government pursued the return of migrants and refugees without an individual examination, they said, and urged the delegation to explain how those administrative practices that contradicted the law were being addressed by the courts.

Responding to those and other questions by the Committee, the delegation said that a criminal trial supported the right to truth by establishing the facts and responsibilities in a case.  Providing access to truth was one of the fundamental functions of the judiciary.  Civil society organizations, according to the code of criminal procedure, had a voice.  For example, trade unions could institute civil proceedings in order to safeguard and promote the interests of the people they were representing.

The delegation stressed that the Italian definition of a victim, even if it did not make a specific mention of a crime, such as enforced disappearance or human trafficking, stipulated that victims were those who suffered the direct offence or the damages arising from that offence, such as all those having emotional ties with the primary victims.  In this context, the definition of family included all those who lived in the same household with the victim.  Courts increasingly considered not only material but moral damages as well and provided redress that restored human dignity.

The preventive system under the Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture had been implemented.  The National Guarantor was taking steps to develop a wide and homogenous network of local guarantors.  Turning to the Diciotti case, the delegation said that all the rescued migrants, with a few exceptions, had remained on board from 18 to 25 August, without grounds for detention.  The National Guarantor had visited the vessel and in its communication to the authorities had noted that the case represented an arbitrary deprivation of liberty, in contravention of European legislation and the Italian Constitution, while the conditions of detention amounted to inhumane and degrading treatment. 

Concluding Remarks

KOJI TERAYA, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, said that one of the key issues was the lack of an autonomous crime of enforced disappearance and, while respecting each State’s legal system, the gravity of the crime of enforced disappearance required its direct criminalization.  The Co-Rapporteur urged Italy to engage with civil society organizations on this review and other issues raised during the dialogue.

MONCEF BAATI, Committee Co-Rapporteur for Italy, reiterated the shared goal which was the appropriate implementation of the Convention, identifying good practices, and correcting weaknesses.  There were many points of convergence between the Committee and Italy, and on others there was less unison, such as the right to truth which lay at the heart of justice, reconciliation and peace making. 

FABRIZIO PETRI, President of the Inter-Ministerial Committee for Human Rights of Italy, said that the Convention touched human dignity and the meaning of humanity and Italy was in the process of understanding the Committee’s efforts to turn it into the reality for the international human rights system.  Italy, with its long tradition of the promotion and protection of human rights, would do its utmost to contribute.

SUELA JANINA, Committee Chairperson, thanked the delegation for their professionalism and good will in recognizing the points that were not compatible with the Convention.  The concluding observations aimed to advance the implementation of the Convention in all States parties and to set up preventive mechanisms and safeguards, which was urgent given the re-emergence of enforced disappearance around the world.



For use of the information media; not an official record

CED/19/2E