Judge rules UK government wrongly imprisoned torture victims

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LONDON – Britain's High Court has ruled that the government unlawfully imprisoned victims of torture in immigration detention centers.

Judge Duncan Ouseley ruled Tuesday in favor of former detainees and a charity who said the government relied on an unreasonably narrow definition of torture when deciding whether asylum applicants should be detained while their cases were processed.

The claimants argued that a policy introduced in September 2016 had led to many detainees, including victims of trafficking, no longer being recognized as torture victims.

The policy narrowed the definition of torture to cover only acts committed by state agents or terrorist groups holding territory rather than by any individual or group.

The judge ruled that the policy excluded individuals who had experienced "severe pain and suffering" and were "particularly vulnerable to harm in detention."

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