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UN Torture Group Suspends Ukraine Visit Over Obstructions

A United Nations torture prevention group has suspended its visit to Ukraine after being denied access to places in several parts of the country where it suspects people are being deprived of their liberty by the Ukrainian Security Service (SBU).

The delegation of the UN Subcommittee on Prevention of Torture (SPT) began its visit on May 19 and was meant to conclude the trip on May 26.

But it said in a May 25 statement that the integrity of the visit had been compromised to the extent that its mandate could not be fully carried out.

Malcolm Evans, head of the delegation, said his team had heard "numerous and serious allegations that people have been detained" in places where "torture or ill-treatment may have occurred."

The delegation was evaluating how its recommendations were being implemented after the SPT first visited Ukraine in 2011.

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