Amnesty International has claimed Fiji's police, corrections officers and military use torture against people accused of crimes or in custody.
In a report, Beating Justice: How Fiji's Security Forces Get Away with Torture, Amnesty has detailed beatings, rape, attacks by police dogs and murder.
"An ingrained culture of torture take root among its security forces" says the Amnesty report.
The report details five cases where people have been beaten to death in police or military custody in Fiji since the 2006 military coup.
Amnesty says Sakiusa Rabaka, 19, was beaten, sexually assaulted and forced to perform military exercises in January 2007. He died from his injuries. The report says eight police officers and one military officer were ultimately convicted over his death and sentenced to prison terms. All were released within a month.
Among the cases detailed in the report is that of Vilikesa Soko, a 30-year-old man and father of three, who was beaten, raped and killed in August 2014. Vilikesa Soko was a suspect in a robbery. After his arrest, he was interrogated, tortured and hospitalised for serious injuries.
Four days into his ordeal, Vilikesa Soko died of a blood clot in his lung, caused by multiple traumatic injuries, including to his rectum and penis, according to an autopsy report that was leaked online.
The report says security forces who commit human rights abuses rarely face sanction.
It says Fiji's current constitution entrenches immunities for any government action between 2006 and 2014
"Torture does not just humiliate the victim. It also debases the torturer by hollowing out their humanity. If Fiji wants to preserve its reputation as a Pacific island nation renowned for its natural beauty, it must end the ugly practices of its security officials," said Kate Schuetze, Amnesty International's Pacific Researcher.
"Not only do the security forces know that torture is taking place, they have stood in the way of accountability. While the Fijian authorities have ratified the UN Convention Against Torture and pledged to end this cruel practice, this will remain an empty gesture until decisive action is taken."
- Herald online