Top UN rights official approves $8 million in grants to help torture victims

22 June 2001
Mary Robinson

On behalf of Secretary-General Kofi Annan, United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights Mary Robinson has approved grants totalling $8 million to organizations supporting survivors of torture.

In a statement issued today, Ms. Robinson's office said the grants had been recommended by the Board of Trustees of the UN Voluntary Fund for Victims of Torture during its 20th session, held in Geneva from 18 May to 1 June. The approved amount represents an increase of $1 million in comparison with last year.

Today's announcement comes just days before the annual UN International Day in Support of Victims of Torture on 26 June. To mark the Day, the Board of Trustees has adopted a Joint Declaration, along with the Committee against Torture, the Special Rapporteur on Torture and Mrs. Robinson. That statement will be distributed on 26 June.

For next year, it is estimated that new applications for grants will amount to at least $12 million. "New voluntary contributions are therefore needed and should be paid before 1 March 2002 in order to be officially recorded by the UN Treasurer well in advance of the 21st session of the Board of Trustees in May 2002," the statement said.


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