- The training has the support of the Ministry of Justice, Public Administration and Human Rights (MJAPDH), of São Tomé and Príncipe and the National Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences, and the Faculty of Medicine of the University of Coimbra (FMUC).
- Course is given at different points in the Democratic Republic of São Tomé and Príncipe: United Nations facilities, on the island of São Tomé and at the Local Hospital, on the island of Príncipe.
The Center for Research and Forensic Training in Human Rights and Humanitarian Action (Coimbra University Center for Humanitarian and Human Rights Forensic Research and Training) of FMUC promoted in São Tomé and Príncipe training in medico-legal assessment of victims of sexual assault.
With the presence, in the opening session, of the Minister of Health and the President of the Supreme Court of Justice of São Tomé and Príncipe, this was a training that involved a strong practical component related to the physical examination of victims of sexual aggression, using to simulation models provided by the Simulation Center of the Faculty of Medicine of Coimbra.
Aimed essentially at health professionals (doctors and nurses in the country), it was coordinated by the executive director of the Center for Forensic Research and Training, Duarte Nuno Vieira, for whom “all the social response to crime that manifests itself through the mechanisms proper to a rule of law, must be based on the production of evidence. When discussing the commission of a crime, it is the production of evidence that determines the meaning of the decisions of the judicial authorities that have to pronounce the existence of a crime, its author, and its responsibility. In situations of alleged sexual aggression, the intervention of health professionals is necessary to promote correct and effective medico-legal expertise, in order to ensure immediate observation of the victims, with the aim of collecting traces or samples likely to be lost or degraded, jeopardizing the identification of potential genetic profiles of the aggressor.
The objective of the training was to provide trainees with important research tools capable of correctly obtaining credible information, collecting and preserving traces with probative value for the reconstitution and interpretation of facts related to sexual aggression, with a view to substantiated conclusions.”
This training action was funded by the United Nations Development Program and had the support of the Ministry of Justice, Public Administration and Human Rights of São Tomé and Príncipe, the National Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences, as well as the Faculty of Coimbra, through the Center for Medical Simulation, the Center for Postgraduate Studies in Legal Medicine and the Center for Forensic Research and Training in Human Rights and Humanitarian Action.
For Carlos Robalo Cordeiro, Director of FMUC, “the Center for Forensic Research and Training in Human Rights and Humanitarian Action is an important international platform for consulting, research, and forensic training to support governments, intergovernmental organizations, and NGOs around the world. It is an institution that, created within the FMUC, involves international specialists of recognized merit and counts on the involvement of other forensic and academic centers”.
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