Torture is more likely to occur to a person with certain risk factors, although in some circumstances political violence may be truly random. A person with a history of one or more risk factors should be queried and examined for evidence of torture.


Risk factors:

(1) refugee (refugee, seeker of political asylum, residence in a refugee camp)

(2) immigrant from a country with totalitarian or military regime

(3) member of minority group (political party, religious, ethnic) in country of origin

(4) leadership in an antigovernment or opposition organization, or relative of a leader of such an organization

(5) civil war or great political instability in country of origin

(6) long history of ethnic strife in country of origin

(7) family history of torture, traumatic injury or murder

(8) history of arrest, detention or being a prisoner of war

(9) member of a gang or criminal organization held by opponents or police


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