COMMITTEE AGAINST TORTURE
CONSIDERATION OF REPORTS SUBMITTED BY STATES PARTIES UNDER ARTICLE
19 OF THE CONVENTION
Conclusions and recommendations of the Committee against Torture
214. The Committee considered the third periodic report of Sweden
(CAT/C/34/Add.4) at its 291st, 292nd and 294th meetings, on 5 and
6 May 1997 (CAT/C/SR.291, 292 and 294/Add.1), and formulated the following
conclusions and recommendations.
215. The third periodic report of Sweden was submitted on 9 August
1996, in accordance with the reporting schedule under the Convention.
It conformed fully to the requirements laid down in the reporting
guidelines. In addition, the Swedish representatives drew the Committee's
attention to relevant developments since the completion of the report.
The Committee and the Swedish representatives engaged in a frank and
open discussion of the report.
216. The Committee takes note with satisfaction of the revised law
relating to refugees, as well as the way in which the Swedish Government
now offers protection to many displaced persons who would not technically
be identified as refugees under the 1951 Convention relating to the
Status of Refugees.4
217. The Committee is also pleased to acknowledge the way in which
Sweden provides material and political support for the rehabilitation
of the victims of torture, both within the country and internationally.
3. Factors and difficulties impeding the application of the provisions
of the Convention
218. Because Sweden adopts a dualistic theory of incorporation of
international treaty norms into its domestic law, the provisions of
the Convention against Torture require enabling legislation before
they become part of Swedish domestic law. The continued failure of
Sweden to do this renders the full implementation of the Convention's
terms more difficult.
219. The Committee is concerned about the continued failure of the
Swedish Government to incorporate into its domestic law the definition
of torture, in accordance with article 1 of the Convention.
220. It is also concerned about the use of "restrictions",
some leading to solitary confinement for a prolonged period of time,
for persons held in pre-trial detention centres and prisons.
221. The Committee is concerned about information it received on isolated
cases of ill-treatment by the police.
222. The Committee expressed concern with regard to certain methods
used by Swedish police in dealing with detainees or with public demonstrations,
such as, in the latter case, using dogs for crowd control.
223. The Committee recommends that the State party proceed to incorporate
the provisions of the Convention against Torture into Swedish law,
as it has already done with regard to the European Convention on Human
224. The Committee specifically renews its recommendation, made during
its consideration of the previous reports of the State party, that
Sweden incorporate into its domestic legislation the definition of
torture as contained in article 1 of the Convention.
225. While the Committee welcomes the information that the question
of "restrictions", including solitary confinement, during
pre-trial detention is under review by the Swedish authorities, it
recommends that the institution of solitary confinement be abolished,
particularly during the period of pre-trial detention, other than
in exceptional cases, inter alia, when the security or the
well-being of persons or property are in danger, and the measure is
applied, in accordance with the law and under judicial control.
226. The Committee recommends that the State party reconsider the
methods used by the police with regard to crowd control.