against Torture, established under article 17 of the Convention against
Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment,
Meeting on 6 May 1998,
Having concluded its consideration of communication No. 65/1997, submitted
to the Committee against Torture under article 22 of the Convention against
Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment,
Having taken into account all information made available to it by the author
of the communication, his counsel and the State party,
Adopts its Views under article 22, paragraph 7, of the Convention.
1. The author of the communication is I. A. O. (born on 29 May 1966), a
Djibouti citizen and member of the Afar ethnic group, currently seeking
asylum in Sweden. He claims that his return to Djibouti would constitute a
violation of article 3 of the Convention against Torture by Sweden. He is
represented by the Advisory Centre for Asylum Seekers and Refugees.
Facts as Presented by the Author
2.1 The author is described as a publicist who has written articles
criticizing the political situation in Djibouti, in particular the
mistreatment of the Afar ethnic group by the politically dominant Issa
ethnic group. He maintains that since coming to Sweden he has continued his
publicist work critical of the current government, and is thus still
considered to be a significant enemy to the regime.
2.2 He states that he became politically active when he was a student living
in Morocco between 1987 and 1989, and that he expressed his views writing
for a student magazine. In 1989, he moved to the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya to
continue his studies. While there he states that he organized supply
transports, financed by Libyan interests, to the Front for Restoration of
Unity and Democracy (FRUD, previously AROD)in Djibouti.
2.3 The author states that he returned to Djibouti on 14 January 1991 and
that he was stopped and arrested by security service agents after leaving
the airport. He says that he was taken to the Nagad prison and interrogated
regarding his involvement with the Afar-led FRUD. He says that he was then
taken to the interrogation centre Villa de Christianos where he was tortured
to force a confession regarding his political associations and activities.
He claims to have been subjected to electrical shocks and beatings with a
nail-studded stick. Because of his weakened physical condition resulting
from this treatment, he says that the security service left him outside of a
medical clinic. It is certified that he was hospitalized from 20 to 30
January 1991.[FNa] A certificate dated 2 September 1995, signed by Dr.
Bourhan of the Clinique Ibn-Sina, states that the author was hospitalized
twice, for the dates 20-30 January and 11-20 February 1991, as a result of
the violence inflicted upon him during incarceration.
[FNa] A certificate dated 2 September 1995, signed by Dr. Bourhan of the
Clinique Ibn-Sina, states that the author was hospitalized twice, for the
dates 20-30 January and 11-20 February 1991, as a result of the violence
inflicted upon him during incarceration.
2.4 According to the author, upon his release from the hospital, on 30
January 1991, he was picked up for more interrogation. This time he was
accused of betraying the Government and was interrogated about his political
activities abroad. He alleges that he was tortured by being forced to sit on
a glass bottle with a broken bottle neck, having a wire inserted into his
penis, having heavy weights hung from his penis and scrotum, being burned
with cigarettes and cigars, being cut with a razor, and being forced to lay
in a bathtub with water dripping at a fixed point on his head. He says that
he was released after nine days of imprisonment and it is certified that he
was hospitalized from 11 to 20 February 1991.
2.5 He claims that he was arrested, for an unspecified reason, on 14 April
1991 and held in prison until 1 July 1991. While he says that he was not
tortured during this imprisonment, he claims that he was kept for a period
of time in a cell flooded with sewage water. He says that he was
interrogated throughout this incarceration about his political activities,
and was offered a diplomatic position abroad in exchange for altering his
2.6 The author claims that he was arrested again on 7 August 1991 while
helping to unload a delivery of weapons intended for FRUD, and that he was
held in detention until 20 August 1991. He states that during this detention
he was interrogated and beaten frequently.
2.7 During his periods of freedom the author claims that he was under
surveillance by the security service, that he was interrogated several
times, and that his home was searched.
2.8 He states that he was able to obtain a national passport and a Swedish
visa with assistance of a lawyer and of Abdalla Kamil, the former Prime
Minister of Djibouti. He claims that Kamil also negotiated with the Djibouti
airport police to facilitate his passage through immigration control. He
left Djibouti on 25 September 1991 arriving in Stockholm via Moscow on 26
September 1991. Upon his arrival in Stockholm, he immediately presented
himself to the airport police and requested Swedish asylum.
2.9 On 4 and 5 December 1991 he had a more comprehensive interview with
police authorities at Carlslund Refugee Reception Centre. At the time he
described his political activities, the actions against him by the Djibouti
Government and his detentions. He claims that the investigating officer did
not question him about torture so he only briefly mentioned the subject. The
author's counsel notes that his client was not represented by counsel at
2.10 It is submitted that the author was granted legal aid and a counsel to
assist him in the asylum process. The Immigration Board rejected the
author's application on 16 November 1992 and ordered that he be expelled
from Sweden. It is submitted by counsel that the Board, which had been given
copies of his political writings, did not find the character of the author's
political involvement such that his fear of persecution was well-founded.
2.11 The Immigration Board decision was appealed on 14 December 1992 to the
Aliens Appeals Board. It is stated that the appeal underscored the author's
torture experiences and included a certificate from Dr. Hans Söderlund,
dated 17 February 1993, corroborating his claims. According to the author,
the medical report states that the author exhibited emotional distress when
describing his experiences in Djibouti, and identifies scars which could be
the result of physical violence.
2.12 The appeal was ultimately rejected on 29 September 1995. It is
submitted that the Aliens Appeals Board based its decision in part on
information from the United States Department of State's Djibouti Country
Report on Human Rights Practices which reported that the general political
situation in Djibouti had improved since the accord between FRUD and the
Djibouti Government in December 1994.[FNb] It is submitted by his counsel
that the Board also found the author's account of his personal situation not
credible, doubting that the Djibouti authorities could know about his
activities against the regime and still release him from prison several
times, and doubting that he would be offered a diplomatic post if the
authorities considered him to be a great threat to the regime. Following the
rejection of his appeal the author went into hiding.
[FNb] In 1994, the Djibouti Government and FRUD signed a peace accord ending
three years of civil war. In March 1995, FRUD was legalized and in 1996 it
was registered as a political party.
2.13 It is stated that, on 6 September 1996, the author submitted a new
application for a residence permit to the Aliens Appeals Board. Included was
documentation of forensic and psychiatric examinations at the Centre for
Torture and Trauma Survivors (Centrum för Tortyr och Traumaskadade - CTD)
and a certificate of his hospitalization in 1991 at the Ibin-Sina clinic.
[FNc] According to the psychiatric examination the author exhibits symptoms
of post-traumatic stress disorder. The forensic examination identifies
several scars which are consistent with his torture claims.
[FNc] Psychiatric record, dated 9 September 1996, in Swedish, by Dr. Hans
Peter Sondergard of CTD. Forensic medical record, dated 9 September 1996, in
Swedish, by Dr. Erik Edston of CTD. Copies of records provided.
2.14 It is stated by counsel that on 16 September 1996 the Aliens Appeals
Board revoked the deportation order against the author and granted him a
personal hearing on 7 November 1996 where he was represented by counsel.
According to the author, on 10 December 1996, the Board rejected his new
application and reinstated the deportation order. It is submitted that the
Board supported its decision by citing inconsistencies in statements by the
author about how he received his injuries and from the fact that he had
waited until the rejection of his first application to document his torture
history for the Board. Further, it is stated that the Board did not find
credible his assertions of continued political writing since arriving in
2.15 On 1 January 1997, the author resubmitted his application requesting
that it be reviewed in the context of changes to the Swedish Aliens Act,
effective 1 January 1997. The author's counsel states that on 10 February
1997 the Board rejected this application holding that there could be no
reconsideration of previously examined circumstances, and further that the
new legislation was of no significance to the case.
2.16 His counsel indicates that inconsistencies in the author's story have
been attributable to post-traumatic stress disorder, and that his delay in
recounting the torture incidents was attributable to illness (tuberculosis)
and cultural differences between himself and the Swedish interrogators at
the airport and later, at the Carlslund Refugee Reception Centre.
3.1 The author claims that the standpoint of the Aliens Appeals Board on the
political situation in Djibouti is a misinterpretation of the actual
circumstances. According to him, the peace agreement referred to is only
between the regime and a minor faction of FRUD, and the overwhelming part of
FRUD continues its political and military struggle against the regime. He
asserts that politically active Afars are arrested on a large scale and that
they suffer torture and other inhumane treatments. Further, he claims that
the regime also takes actions against the ordinary Afar population, for
example, subjecting Afars to constant police surveillance.
3.2 The author maintains that since coming to Sweden he has continued his
publicist work against the current government, and is thus considered to be
a significant enemy to the regime. He states that the Djibouti authorities
are aware that he is staying in Sweden, and are unhappy with his depiction
of Djibouti in his writings. Therefore, he contends that he will face
detention, torture and other cruel and degrading treatment if he is forced
to return to Djibouti.
State Party's Observations
4. On 14 April 1997, the Committee, acting through its Special Rapporteur
for New Communications, transmitted the communication to the State party for
comments and requested the State party not to expel the author while his
communication was under consideration by the Committee.
5.1 By submission of 1 July 1997, the State party challenges the
admissibility of the communication but also addresses the merits of the
case. It requests the Committee, should it not find the communication
inadmissible, to examine the communication on its merits as soon as
possible. It informs the Committee that the Immigration Board has stayed the
enforcement of the expulsion order, pending the Committee's final decision
in the matter.
5.2 As regards the domestic procedure, the State party explains that the
basic provisions concerning the right of aliens to enter or to remain in
Sweden are contained in the 1989 Aliens Act. For the determination of
refugee status there are two instances, the Swedish Immigration Board and
the Aliens Appeals Board. In exceptional cases, the application can be
referred to the Government by either of the two Boards. In this context, the
State party explains that the Government has no jurisdiction of its own in
cases not referred to it by the Boards. Such cases are determined by the
Boards independently. The State party clarifies that the Swedish
Constitution prohibits any interference by the Government, the Parliament or
any other public authority in the decision making of an administrative
authority in a particular case. According to the State party, an
administrative authority as the Immigration Board or the Aliens Appeals
Board enjoys the same independence as a court of law in this respect.
5.3 As of 1 January 1997, the Aliens Act has been amended. According to the
amended Act (chap. 3, sect. 4, in conjunction with sect. 3) an alien is
entitled to a residence permit if he or she experiences a well-founded fear
of being subjected to the death penalty or to corporal punishment or to
torture or other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment. Under chapter
2, section 5(b), of the Act, an alien who is refused entry, can apply for a
residence permit if the application is based on circumstances which have not
previously been examined in the case and if either the alien is entitled to
asylum in Sweden or if it will otherwise be in conflict with humanitarian
requirements to enforce the decision on refusal of entry or expulsion. New
circumstances cannot be assessed by the authority ex officio but only upon
5.4 Chapter 8, section 1, of the Act provides that an alien who has been
refused entry or who shall be expelled may never be sent back to a country
where there is a reasonable cause to believe that he would be in danger of
suffering capital or corporal punishment or of being subjected to torture or
other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, nor to a country where
he is not protected from being sent on to a country where he would be in
such a danger.
5.5 As to the admissibility of the communication, the State party submits
that it is not aware of the same matter having been presented to another
international instance of international investigation or settlement. The
State party explains that the author can at any time lodge a new application
for re-examination of his case to the Aliens Appeals Board, based on new
factual circumstances. Finally, the State party contends that the
communication is inadmissible as being incompatible with the provisions of
5.6 As to the merits of the communication, the State party refers to the
Committee's prior jurisprudence, and the criteria established by the
Committee. In this context, the State party submits that the relevant
provisions in the Aliens Act reflect exactly the same principle as laid down
in article 3 of the Convention. The State party recalls that the mere
possibility that a person will be subjected to ill-treatment in his or her
country of origin does not suffice to prohibit his or her return as being
incompatible with article 3 of the Convention.
5.7 In the instant case, the Immigration Board considered that the
information submitted concerning the author's political position and the
extent and nature of his alleged activity did not support the finding that
he had cause for a well-founded fear of persecution. In its rejection of the
author's appeal, the Aliens Appeals Board found that the information
submitted by the author lacked credibility and moreover, that, even if the
information was accepted as truthful, it did not show that he would risk
being subjected to persecution or that he would be entitled to asylum. The
author's new application was rejected by the Aliens Appeals Board on 10
December 1996. It found unsubstantiated the author's claims that he had not
been able to understand the interpreters used at the hearings and that his
counsel had not devoted enough time to the case. It further noted that the
author has submitted contradictory information about the times he had spent
in detention and about the cause of the marks on his body.
5.8 The State party emphasizes that the Aliens Appeals Board had the benefit
of an oral hearing and that it based its opinion also on its first hand
impression of the author. According to the State party, this gives the Board
such an advantage that the Committee should allow the Board a certain margin
of appreciation when it subsequently evaluates the Board's decision.
5.9 The State party bases itself on the findings of the Immigration Board
and Aliens Appeals Board and points out inconsistencies in the author's
story in relation to the periods of detention and argues that it is unlikely
that the author was offered a high diplomatic post if he was perceived as a
threat to the Government. According to the State party, the inconsistencies
and peculiarities of the author's story significantly affect its veracity
and on the credibility of his claims, including the claim that he has been
tortured. On the basis of the above, the State party contends that the
evidence presented by the author is insufficient to demonstrate that the
risk of being tortured is a foreseeable and necessary consequence of his
return to Djibouti. According to the State party, there is no evidence that
the author's alleged political activities render him a target of persecution
by the Djibouti authorities.
5.10 By way of conclusion, the State party notes that the Committee has
found violations of article 3 in all the cases against Sweden which it so
far examined on the merits. In this context, the State party points out that
its immigration authorities have a considerable experience with the
examination and determination of cases of this nature, involving difficult
assessments as regards the credibility of the information submitted.
Moreover, they have a considerable knowledge about the human rights
situations in different countries. The State party also recalls that the
test applied by the European Commission of Human Rights under article 3 of
the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental
Freedoms, is in principle the same as the one applied by the Committee under
article 3 of the Convention against Torture. However, the European
Commission has declared inadmissible most complaints against Sweden as
5.11 The State party expresses its concern about a possible development of
different standards under the two human rights instruments of essentially
the same right. The State party argues that diverging standards in this
respect would create serious problems for States which have declared
themselves bound by both instruments. Problems would arise when States
attempt to adapt themselves to international case-law, if this case-law is
inconsistent. According to the State party, inconsistent case-law may also
have serious detrimental effects on the overall credibility of the human
rights protection system at international level.
6.1 In his comments on the State party's submission, counsel points out that
Djibouti is not a party to the Convention against Torture and that
consequently its Government is not even willing to give an image of
respecting human rights. According to counsel, this is an additional reason
for believing that the author will be tortured upon his return.
6.2 Counsel explains that there is no possibility of a further new
application to the Aliens Appeals Board, because no factual new
circumstances exist in the author's case. He maintains that all domestic
remedies have been exhausted.
6.3 As to the merits, counsel contends that the human rights situation in
Djibouti raises serious concerns. He explains that the political situation
is characterized by the tension between the two main ethnical groups, the
Issas and the Afars. After many years of struggle, a peace treaty between
FRUD and the Government was signed in December 1994, but according to
counsel, a large majority of FRUD continued its political resistance.
Counsel submits that the Government discriminates against the Afar
population in general and oppresses political active opponents in
particular. According to counsel, the situation in Djibouti amounts to a
consistent pattern of gross, flagrant, or mass violations of human rights.
6.4 Counsel acknowledges that a serious human rights situation as such does
not constitute a sufficient ground for determining that a person will be at
risk of being tortured if returned. According to counsel however, in
Djibouti prerequisite political and social conditions exist that make it
indeed likely that torture would occur.
6.5 Counsel acknowledges that the Swedish legislation reflects essentially
the same test as article 3 of the Convention, but argues that there is no
indication that this test was indeed applied in the author's case.
6.6 Counsel explains that the author has been confusing what happened at
which hearings, and that this explains the inconsistencies of his claims
concerning the interpretation. Counsel states that the author suffers
psychological trauma and that his confusion is understandable and cannot be
considered as affecting his credibility. Counsel maintains that the time
spent by the author's legal representative in preparation of the hearing of
his case before the Immigration Board was minimal and that his case was
therefore not fully presented.
6.7 As regards the inconsistencies in the author's story, counsel explains
that these are caused by the difficulties the author was facing in trying to
adapt to a new society, whereas suffering the consequences of torture.
Counsel contends that the authorities lacked understanding for the author's
situation. He stresses that the author suffers from a post-traumatic stress
disorder and that this explains the inconsistencies in his story and his
gaps of memory. In this context, counsel refers to the Committee's prior
6.8 As regards the offer to give him a diplomatic post, counsel explains
that the Government in Djibouti has on numerous occasions tried to win over
opponents by offering them high posts and that it needs educated
6.9 Counsel refers to the medical evidence and submits that there is no
doubt that the author has been tortured. He asserts that in view of the
past, continued detention, torture and other ill-treatment is the necessary
and foreseeable consequence of the author's forced return to Djibouti.
6.10 As regards the State party's argument that its immigration authorities
have a lot of experience in handling asylum cases, counsel submits that the
authorities tend not to accept incoherent and contradictory statements from
persons who have been subjected to torture, although testimony from experts
in the field demonstrate that these inconsistencies are the result of the
effects of the torture on the person. According to counsel, most immigration
officials have little understanding of these problems and don't follow
regular training programmes. As regards the availability of information,
although information from non-governmental organizations is available,
officials prefer to rely on information available through diplomatic
channels. Counsel concludes that the standard applied by the State party is
not as high as it claims.
6.11 As regards the State party's argument in relation to possible diverging
case-law by the European Commission of Human Rights and the Committee
against Torture, counsel submits that these bodies are independent of each
other and work in a different context. Counsel disagrees with the State
party's concerns and states that, if a different standard is applied by the
two bodies, all the State party has to do is to apply the stricter of the
The Committee's Admissibility Decision
7. At its nineteenth session, the Committee examined the admissibility of
the communication. It noted with appreciation the information given by the
State party that the Immigration Board has stayed the enforcement of the
expulsion order against the author, pending the Committee's final decision.
8. The Committee ascertained, as it was required to do under article 22,
paragraph 5(a), of the Convention, that the same matter had not been and was
not being examined under another procedure of international investigation or
settlement. The Committee was further of the opinion that all available
domestic remedies had been exhausted, in view of the fact that no new
circumstances existed on the basis of which the author could have filed a
new application with the Aliens Appeals Board. The Committee found that no
further obstacles to the admissibility of the communication existed.
9. The Committee noted that both the State party and the author's counsel
had forwarded observations on the merits of the communication, and that the
State party had requested the Committee, if it were to find the
communication admissible, to proceed to the examination of the merits of the
communication. Nevertheless, the Committee considered that the information
before it was not sufficient to enable it to adopt its Views.
10. In particular, the Committee wished to receive from the author's counsel
more precise and detailed information concerning the character and frequency
of the author's publications, the nature of his political activities as well
as his reasons to believe that he will be subjected to torture upon his
return to Djibouti. Likewise, the Committee wished to receive information
from the State party concerning its statement that the human rights
situation in Djibouti had improved since the peace accord of December 1994,
and how this would affect the author's situation if he were to return.
11. Accordingly, on 20 November 1997, the Committee against Torture decided
that the communication was admissible, and requested the State party and the
author's counsel to submit their observations on the above questions so as
to allow the Committee to examine the merits of the communication at its
next (twentieth) session.
Parties' Replies to the Committee's Decision on Admissibility
12.1 By note of 28 January 1998, the State party points out that it never
suggested that the human rights situation in Djibouti had improved since the
peace accord of 1994, but, on the contrary, that the general situation of
human rights in Djibouti leaves much to be desired. It recalls that its
arguments concerning the merits of the author's communication were mainly
based on his credibility rather than on the human rights situation in
Djibouti. The State party refers to its earlier submission and maintains
that the inconsistencies and peculiarities in the author's story impact on
its veracity and credibility.
12.2 The State party points out that, although the situation of human rights
in Djibouti is far from satisfactory, the freedom of the press in the
country is generally respected, and that the opposition issues weekly and
monthly publications which are publicly critical of the regime.
13.1 By letter of 19 February 1998, counsel for the author states that the
author did not publicly express any political opinion before he left
Djibouti in 1987. He provides additional information about the author's
activities between 1987 (when he left for Morocco) and his return to
Djibouti in January 1991. After his return to Djibouti, he maintained
contacts with Afar opponents of the Government and participated in the
planning of political demonstrations and other political activities.
13.2 With regard to the nature of the author's publications, counsel
explains that in Morocco, he published six issues of a newspaper for Afar
students which dealt with the question of discrimination of Afar students in
the educational system of Djibouti. During his time abroad, the author also
worked on an essay on the history of Djibouti.
13.3 After his departure from Djibouti in September 1991, the author wrote
articles about the political situation in Djibouti which were published in
different European-based Arabic newspapers.[FNd] He continued to support the
FRUD and opposed the Government, the 1994 peace accord and the human rights
situation in Djibouti. It is stated that two of the newspapers in which the
author published, are being distributed all over the Arabic-speaking world,
[FNd] According to a list provided by the author's counsel, he published: in
1991, one letter to the editor; in 1992, three letters to the editor; in
1993, one two-page article and one letter to the editor; in 1994, one letter
to the editor; in 1995, one letter to the editor and two commentaries; in
1996, two letters to the editor; in 1997, one article and one letter to the
13.4 With regard to the author's belief that he will be subjected to torture
upon return to Djibouti, counsel recalls that the human rights situation is
still very poor, and refers in this context to the United States State
Department report on Djibouti. The Afar resistance is still opposing the
Government and in autumn 1997, FRUD reopened its military campaign. A number
of FRUD officials have been arrested in September 1997. Counsel submits that
the author belongs to the oppressed Afar group, that he has made his views
public, that he has been arrested and tortured in 1991, that he has
participated in political activities and that he has published articles
attacking the Government. According to counsel, it is likely that the
Djibouti authorities are aware of the author's publications and that it is
important to them to neutralize him. In the light of the present political
situation and the lack of respect for human rights in Djibouti, counsel
argues that a substantial and serious risk exists that the author, when
returned to Djibouti, will once again be subjected to torture.
Issues and Proceedings Before the Committee
14.1 The Committee has considered the communication in the light of all the
information made available to it by the parties, in accordance with article
22, paragraph 4, of the Convention.
14.2 The Committee must decide, pursuant to paragraph 1 of article 3,
whether there are substantial grounds for believing that the author would be
in danger of being subjected to torture upon return to Djibouti. In reaching
this decision, the Committee must take into account all relevant
considerations, pursuant to paragraph 2 of article 3, including the
existence of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of
human rights. The aim of the determination, however, is to establish whether
the individual concerned would be personally at risk of being subjected to
torture in the country to which he or she would return. It follows that the
existence of a consistent pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of
human rights in a country does not as such constitute a sufficient ground
for determining that a particular person would be in danger of being
subjected to torture upon his return to that country; additional grounds
must exist to show that the individual concerned would be personally at
risk. Similarly, the absence of a consistent pattern of gross violations of
human rights does not mean that a person cannot be considered to be in
danger of being subjected to torture in his or her specific circumstances.
14.3 The Committee has noted the medical evidence provided by the author,
and on this basis is of the opinion that there is firm reason to believe
that the author has been tortured in the past. In this context, the
Committee observes that the author suffers from a post-traumatic stress
disorder, and that this has to be taken into account when assessing the
author's presentation of the facts. The Committee is therefore of the
opinion that the inconsistencies as exist in the author's story do not raise
doubts as to the general veracity of his claim that he was detained and
14.4 The Committee further notes that the author was detained in 1991,
allegedly because he had published articles abroad, criticizing the
Government. The author has stated that he has continued to publish articles
about Djibouti, and that he therefore continues to be at risk of being
detained and tortured when returned to Djibouti. The Committee notes that
the State party's immigration authorities were of the opinion that the
author's writings were not of such character as to endanger him upon his
return. The author has provided a list of his publications in
Arabic-language magazines, in which he has criticized the Government for its
policies and denounced the discriminatory treatment of Afars. There is no
indication that the author is otherwise politically active against the
Government of Djibouti.
14.5 The Committee is aware of reported human rights violations in Djibouti,
but has no information which would allow it to conclude that a consistent
pattern of gross, flagrant or mass violations of human rights exists in
Djibouti. According to the information available to the Committee, although
journalists are occasionally jailed or intimidated by police, they do not
appear to be among the groups that are targeted for repression and
opposition periodicals circulate freely and openly criticise the Government.
The Committee also notes that no reports of torture exist with regard to the
FRUD officials who were detained in September 1997. The Committee recalls
that, for the purposes of article 3 of the Convention, a foreseeable, real
and personal risk must exist of being subjected to torture in the country to
which a person is returned. On the basis of the considerations above, the
Committee is of the opinion that such risk has not been established. In this
connection, the Committee notes that a risk of being detained as such is not
sufficient to trigger the protection of article 3 of the Convention.
14.6 The Committee considers that the information before it does not show
that substantial grounds exist for believing that the author will be in
danger of being subjected to torture if he is returned to Djibouti.
15. The Committee against Torture, acting under article 22, paragraph 7, of
the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading
Treatment or Punishment, is of the view that the facts as found by the
Committee do not reveal a breach of article 3 of the Convention.
[Done in English, French, Russian and Spanish, the English text being the