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Concluding Observations, CAT/C/TUN/CO/3, 6 May 2016: Tunisia

C. Principal subjects of concern and recommendations

Forensic examinations as proof of sexual acts

41. The Committee notes with concern that consensual relations between persons of the same sex are criminalized in the State party and that persons suspected of being homosexual are forced by a judge’s order to submit to an anal examination conducted by a forensic physician to prove their homosexuality. Notwithstanding the right to refuse to submit to such examinations, the Committee is concerned about information that several persons have accepted them, under threat from the police, who contend among other things that a refusal would be interpreted as incriminating. The Committee also notes with concern reports of vaginal examinations, sometimes performed without consent, conducted to prove sexual acts such as extramarital relations and acts of prostitution (arts. 2 and 6).

42. The State party should repeal article 230 of the Criminal Code, which makes consensual relations between adults of the same sex a crime. It should also prohibit intrusive medical examinations that have no medical justification and cannot be performed with the free and informed consent of the persons subjected to them, who consequently will then be prosecuted.

Link to full text of the report: concluding-observations-cat-tunisia-2016-eng