The trade in tools of torture: a South African case study

Policy and legislative changes should be made to better regulate trade in law enforcement equipment.

This report discusses the South African trade in law enforcement equipment that may be used for torture and ill treatment. Currently, there are no controls on this trade into, or from, South Africa. Various policy and legislative changes should be made to better regulate it. These include prohibiting the import and export of security equipment that has no practical purpose other than for torture. South Africa should also control the trade in any equipment that can have a legitimate law enforcement role but can be (mis)used for torture or ill treatment.

About the authors

Gugu Dube is a researcher in the Transnational Threats and International Crime Programme in Pretoria. She has a BA Honours in International Relations from the University of Pretoria and is pursuing her MA at the University of the Witwatersrand.

Noël Stott worked for ISS for more than 14 years on all aspects of arms control, disarmament and nonproliferation including previous work undertaken by ISS with the Omega Research Foundation.

Cover image: © Amelia Broodryk/ISS

Development partners
This report has been produced with financial assistance of the European Union. The contents of this document are the sole responsibility of the author and can under no circumstances be regarded as reflecting the position of the European Union. The ISS is grateful for support from the members of the ISS Partnership Forum: the Hanns Seidel Foundation, the European Union and the governments of Canada, Denmark, Finland, Ireland, the Netherlands, Norway, Sweden and the USA.
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