Elizabeth Coppin publishes response to Committee Against Torture’s Decision

Photograph copyright of Joanne O’Brien, reproduced with permission
Feb 14 2023 Posted: 09:36 GMT

Elizabeth Coppin has today published her personal response to the recent Decision of a majority of the United Nations Committee Against Torture (CAT) in her Individual Communication against Ireland: Coppin v Ireland. The majority Decision finds in favour of Ireland under articles 12, 13, 14 and 16 of the Convention Against Torture. 

Three Committee members issued dissenting Opinions. The dissenting Opinions highlight the inconsistency between the majority’s Decision and the CAT’s previous Concluding Observations concerning Ireland in 2011 and 2017, as well as the United Nations Human Rights Committee’s Concluding Observations concerning Ireland in 2022. 

These developments follow a landmark Admissibility Decision in 2020, finding that the CAT had full jurisdiction to consider the merits of Mrs Coppin’s Complaint notwithstanding Ireland’s claims that the matters raised were historical and that Mrs Coppin had waived her rights in exchange for ‘ex gratia’ payments.    

Also today, Mrs Coppin published key documents from her case in the public interest:

  1. Coppin v Ireland, Witness Statement of Elizabeth Coppin
  2. Coppin v Ireland, Expert Psychological Report of Professor Nimisha Patel
  3. Coppin v Ireland, Complaint
  4. Coppin v Ireland, State Defence on Admissibility
  5. Coppin v Ireland, Elizabeth Coppin Reply to State Defence on Admissibility
  6. Coppin v Ireland, State Defence on Merits
  7. Coppin v Ireland, Elizabeth Coppin Reply to State Defence on Merits
  8. Coppin v Ireland, State Observations on Elizabeth Coppin Reply
  9. Coppin v Ireland, Elizabeth Coppin Reply to State Observations

On 13 February 2023 Mrs Coppin visited the Irish Centre for Human Rights to discuss her Individual Complaint and to share with staff and students her response to the CAT’s final Decision. 

Elizabeth Coppin’s full case file is being prepared for permanent preservation and access at the University of Galway Library and Archives. Dr Maeve O’Rourke has worked as a member of Mrs Coppin’s legal team since 2018, and students of the Human Rights Law Clinic have partnered with Mrs Coppin in research and preparation for the permanent deposit of her personal archive at the University of Galway. 

Click here and here for analysis of the CAT’s final Decision and dissenting Opinions by Professor Máiréad Enright and Professor Natasa Mavronicola of Birmingham Law School. 

 Elizabeth Coppin Visit to the ICHR

Picture: Elizabeth and Peter Coppin at the Irish Centre for Human Rights on 13 February 2023, with Mary Harney, PhD scholar, Dr Maeve O’Rourke, and students of the Law (BCL) and Human Rights undergraduate degree