GENEVA – A U.N. human rights expert is urging Tunisian authorities to expedite judicial processing of more than 1,500 people accused of terrorist acts, saying nearly all are lingering in provisional detention without having been convicted of any crimes.
Ben Emmerson, a special rapporteur on human rights amid the fight against terrorism, has aired concerns about prolonged detention, allegations of torture, and restrictions on the movement of terror suspects.
Ending a five-day mission to Tunisia, Emmerson said Thursday that over 1,500 people face investigations and prosecution for alleged terrorism, but fewer than 10 percent of them have been sentenced. The rest are "deprived of their liberty" for long periods.
The government estimates that Tunisia is home to 3,000 jihadis, but many believe the real number is at least twice that.