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Nepal army guilty of systematic torture, UN investigator says

[JURIST] The Nepalese army has resorted to systematic torture to gain intelligence and confessions in its continuing fight against Maoist rebels in the country, the Special Rapporteur of the UN Commission on Human Rights [official website] said Friday. Special Rapporteur Manfred Nowak, who has been investigating claims of abuse for the past week in the country, said there also existed "shocking evidence" of torture by rebel forces as well. Nepal [Wikipedia backgrounder; JURIST news archive] has increasingly come under scrutiny by human rights advocates as violence between the government and rebels has increased over the past several years. Violence between the factions broke out in 1996 [Wikipedia backgrounder] as the Maoist rebels have sought to overthrow the government. The Royal Nepalese Army has denied the accusations in the report. Nowak is expected to present the results of his investigation to the full Commission in 2006. The Special Rapporteur has a news release on the investigation. AP has more.

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