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For Immediate Release

TASSC International to Honor PHR for Contributions to the Fight Against Torture

Cambridge, Mass - 03/25/2011

Cambridge, Mass. – March 25, 2011 – Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) will be honored by the Friends of Torture Abolition and Survivors Support Coalition International (TASSC) for significant contributions to the struggle against torture and the treatment and healing of torture survivors. The fundraising and recognition awards dinner will be held Saturday, April 16, 2011 at 6 p.m. at the Unitarian Universalist Church of Arlington, Virginia.

The evening’s other honorees are PHR Asylum Network volunteer Dr. Coleen Kivlahan, for her work with torture survivors, the J. Schmidt Free Clinic, and the organization Witness Against Torture.

“We are thrilled to be recognized for our efforts to help the victims of US sanctioned torture and bring this dark part of America’s history to an end,” said Frank Donaghue, CEO of Physicians for Human Rights. “We are among great company in receiving this award, and with the continued help of this community, we can ensure that all officials involved in the authorization and implementation of torture and unethical human experimentation are held accountable for their actions.”

Torture survivor Frida Ngwa will be speaking at the event, and leading military critic of US torture policy retired Brigadier General Dr. Stephen Xenakis, will deliver the keynote, “The Struggle Against US Sponsored Torture.”

TASSC is founded by and for torture survivors, and works to end the practice of torture and to empower survivors, their families, and communities.

This event is open to the public. RSVP and purchase tickets here. All RSVPs must be received by April 8, 2011.

Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) is an independent organization that uses medicine and science to stop mass atrocities and severe human rights violations. We are supported by the expertise and passion of health professionals and concerned citizens alike.

Since 1986, PHR has conducted investigations in more than 40 countries around the world, including Afghanistan, the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Rwanda, Sudan, the United States, the former Yugoslavia, and Zimbabwe.

  • 1986 — Led investigations of torture in Chile gaining freedom for heroic doctors there
  • 1988 — First to document the Iraqi use of chemical weapons on Kurds providing               evidence for prosecution of war criminals
  • 1996 — Exhumed mass graves in the Balkans and Rwanda to provide evidence for               International Criminal Tribunals
  • 1997 — Shared the Nobel Peace Prize for the International Campaign to Ban Landmines
  • 2003 — Warned US Policymakers on health and human rights conditions prior to and               during the invasion of Iraq
  • 2004 — Documented genocide and sexual violence in Darfur in support of international               prosecutions
  • 2010 — Investigated the epidemic of violence spread by Burma’s military junta
  • 2011 — Championed the principle of noninterference with medical services in times of               armed conflict and civil unrest during the Arab Spring
  • 2012 — Trained doctors, lawyers, police, and judges in the Democratic Republic of the               Congo, Kenya, and Syria on the proper collection of evidence in sexual               violence cases
  • 2013 — Won first prize in the Tech Challenge for Atrocity Prevention with MediCapt, our               mobile app that documents evidence of torture and sexual violence

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