Title

State brutality and human rights activism in the little red dot

Publication Type

Book Chapter

Publication Date

5-2017

Abstract

This chapter highlights the activism in Singapore against torture and inhumane punishment in the country’s recent history. We first examine the legal compliance of the definition of torture and inhuman punishment in Singapore with international standards, and elaborate on the effects of such treatment upon those who receive it. We then survey specific instances of torture under the state, and the resultant activism found against it. In examining the interaction between the acts of the state and activism, this chapter focuses on three alleged victim groups: (1) political prisoners who were detained under Operations Coldstore and Spectrum; (2) migrant workers, and (3) judicial caning in Singapore. Notwithstanding the specific instances of activism here, our findings also show that there has been a general lack of activism against such forms of torture and inhuman punishment. While this may be a limitation in chronicling the history of activism, this chapter further examines the reasons for this pronounced dearth. Thus, the trammelling forces of culture, victim psychology, state-induced structural constrains, as well as the inherent limitations within, and between, non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in Singapore, will be examined.

Discipline

Human Rights Law | Law and Society

Publication

A History of Human Rights Society in Singapore

Editor

Jiyoung Song

ISBN

9781138694729

Identifier

10.4324/9781315527413

Publisher

Taylor and Francis

City or Country

London

Additional URL

http://doi.org./10.4324/9781315527413