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Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance

& Other Ill Treatment

In the early years of the 21st Century, 2000 to 2025        

Republic of Equatorial Guinea

Beatings and torture by security forces are reportedly common.

Prisons are overcrowded and feature harsh conditions, including physical abuse, poor sanitation, and denial of medical care

[Freedom House Country Report, 2018]

Description: Description: EquatorialGuinea

CAUTION:  The following links have been culled from the web to illuminate the situation in Equatorial Guinea.  Some of these links may lead to websites that present allegations that are unsubstantiated or even false.  No attempt has been made to validate their authenticity or to verify their content.



If you are looking for material to use in a term-paper, you are advised to scan the postings on this page and others to see which aspects of Torture by Authorities are of particular interest to you.  You might be interested in exploring the moral justification for inflicting pain or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment in order to obtain critical information that may save countless lives, or to elicit a confession for a criminal act, or to punish someone to teach him a lesson outside of the courtroom.  Perhaps your paper might focus on some of the methods of torture, like fear, extreme temperatures, starvation, thirst, sleep deprivation, suffocation, or immersion in freezing water.  On the other hand, you might choose to write about the people acting in an official capacity who perpetrate such cruelty.  There is a lot to the subject of Torture by Authorities.  Scan other countries as well as this one.  Draw comparisons between activity in adjacent countries and/or regions.  Meanwhile, check out some of the Term-Paper resources that are available on-line.

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E Guinea carried out wave of torture after coup bid: activists

Agence France-Presse AFP, 30 March 2018

[accessed 15 April 2018]

Several members of the opposition Citizens for Innovation (CI) party among 38 who were held at the main police station in the capital Malabo - which they dubbed "Guantanamo" - told AFP of alleged abuse during their detention from December 28 to January 3.

"We were tortured for a week," said party activist Ernesto Obama Ondo, 42. "I received 150 lashes every day," he said in Malabo. "My buttocks were in shreds."

Mireille Buila Euka, 24, also recounted being lashed, with her hands and feet bound. "I was whipped 100 times the first night," she said.

The party has said that during their trial for "rebellion" in February, around 30 of the 147 defendants could not even stand up because of the alleged torture they endured at "Guantanamo".

Activist dies in E.Guinea prison after 'torture'

Agence France-Presse AFP, 15 January 2018

[accessed 15 January 2018]

An opposition activist died in prison after being tortured in Equatorial Guinea, the country's main opposition party said Monday, accusing the government of "cruel and inhumane" treatment of its detainees.

Santiago Ebee Ela, 41, died at the central police station in capital Malabo on Saturday night as a result of "cruel torture", Citizens for Innovation (CI) said in a statement.

The death was not confirmed by Equatorial Guinean authorities nor reported by state media.

2020 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices: Rquatorial Guinea

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, 30 March 2021

[accessed 18 July 2021]


Police reportedly beat and threatened detainees to extract information or to force confessions. On March 7, after serving five months in an isolation cell, according to an opposition blog, Felipe Obama Nse was admitted to the General Hospital in Malabo after the head of Black Beach Prison had him tortured. There were no reports of any action taken against the head of the prison. Reportedly incarcerated at the express command of President Obiang, Obama Nse had been a prisoner for five years without trial.

Some military personnel and police reportedly raped, sexually assaulted, or beat women, including at checkpoints. Foreigners recounted being harassed at checkpoints, including having guns pointed at them without provocation. Senior government officials took few steps to address such violence and were themselves sometimes implicated in it.

Impunity was a significant problem within the security forces, due to corruption, politicization of the forces, poor training, and the ability of senior government officials to order extrajudicial acts.


Conditions in the country’s three prisons and 12 police station jails were generally harsh and life threatening due to abuse, overcrowding, disease, inadequate food, poorly trained staff, limited oversight, and lack of medical care.

Freedom House Country Report

2018 Edition

[accessed 12 May 2020]


Beatings and torture by security forces are reportedly common. Prisons are overcrowded and feature harsh conditions, including physical abuse, poor sanitation, and denial of medical care.

Human Rights Watch World Report 2015 - Events of 2014

Human Rights Watch, 29 January 2015 or at

[accessed 18 March 2015]


TORTURE, ARBITRARY DETENTION, AND UNFAIR TRIALS - Due process rights are routinely flouted in Equatorial Guinea and prisoner mistreatment remains common. Torture continues to take place, despite government denials. Many detainees are held indefinitely without knowing the charges against them. Some are held in secret detention. Poor conditions in prisons and jails can be life-threatening.

Equatorial Guinea: Halt Prisoner Torture

Human Rights Watcg, 30 July 2014

[accessed 1 August 2014]

THE TORTURED TEACHER - Agustín Esono Nsogo, a teacher who established and directs a private school in Bata, was released under international pressure in February 2014 after more than a year in prison. He was arrested without warrant at his home on October 17, 2012, then transferred to Black Beach prison in Malabo and held without charge or trial.

His lawyer, Fabián Nsue Nguema, told Human Rights Watch that Esono was held there incommunicado for at least a week, and was tortured in an effort to get him to confess to an alleged plot to destabilize the country. Nsue said that guards tied Esono’s hands and feet and suspended him from above “like an animal,” then severely beat him with batons. Most of the blows were on his wrists and feet, the lawyer said, but his client was also beaten on the head and lost hearing in one ear as a result. He was denied medical attention. Nsue said the beatings happened three times and, at the time of his release, Esono had visible marks of torture on his wrists.

Hell Holes: Torture, starvation and murder the norm at world’s worst gulags

Perry Chiaramonte, Fox News, 1 March 2013

[accessed 2 March 2013]

BLACK BEACH PRISON, EQUATORIAL GUINEA - Torture and starvation are the norm at Black Beach, with many victims being denied medical care after being beaten. Food is so scarce many prisoners have died of starvation. Inmates are kept in their cells and shackled at their feet for more than 12 hours a day.

A large number of the current prison population are part of a failed coup d’état against President Teodoro Obiang Nguema in 2004. South African arms dealer and mercenary Nick du Toit, who spent five years in Black Beach, told Rapport that prisoners were tortured with electric shocks and burning cigarettes. One coup plotter suffered a fatal heart attack while being tortured, he said. In an article he penned entitled “My prison hell,” du Toit wrote of how his handcuffs cut down to the bone and were left to rust in place. He lost more than 80 pounds before he was suddenly pardoned in 2009.


From an old article -- URL not available

Article was published sometime prior to 2015


There were arbitrary arrests and detentions of suspected opponents, including for not attending the August celebrations of the anniversary of President Obiang taking power. Most were released without charge after a few days or weeks. Several were tortured or otherwise ill-treated.

Police arrested Agustín Esono Nsogo at his home in Bata on 17 October at 11pm, without a warrant. He was held incommunicado at Black Beach prison for at least a week, and was tortured on three occasions, apparently to force him to confess to a plot to destabilize the country. His detention was not legalized until one month after his arrest, well beyond the 72 hours prescribed by national law. He was not charged with any offence by the year’s end.


Antonio Lebán, a member of the Army Special Forces, was arrested in Bata soon after 17 October and was not seen or heard from since. His arrest appeared to be linked to that of Agustín Esono Nsogo.


For current articles:: Search Amnesty International Website

[accessed 31 December 2018]

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Human Rights Reports » 2005 Country Reports on Human Rights Practices

U.S. Dept of State Bureau of Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor, March 8, 2006

[accessed 24 January 2013]

[accessed 3 July 2019]

TORTURE AND OTHER CRUEL, INHUMAN, OR DEGRADING TREATMENT OR PUNISHMENT – The law does not specifically prohibit such practices, and although the law mandates respect for the liberty and dignity of persons and adherence to the Universal Declaration on Human Rights, members of the security forces tortured, beat, and otherwise abused suspects, prisoners, and opposition politicians. In September AI reported that torture was widespread in the country's places of detention and during the course of trials. In 2004 senior government officials told foreign diplomats that human rights did not apply to criminals and that torture of known criminals was not a human rights abuse. No action has been taken, or is expected to be taken against security forces responsible for torture.

Unlike in the previous year, there were no reports that prisoners died from torture; however, there were reports that officials tortured political opposition activists and other persons during the year. For example, on May 8, a group of 15 members of the opposition party Convergence for Social Democracy (CPDS) were violently attacked at the Malabo airport. When the group was passing through the police checkpoint to enter the departure hall, policemen asked the group for interior ministry authorization as a condition of travel. Policemen then violently attacked the young people and those accompanying them, hitting them with the butts of their handguns, causing substantial injury to several of them, and leaving some girls in the group undressed in public. At least 10 were detained on police premises, including one who suffered serious injuries and was given no medical treatment. They were released one week later.

About 70 people charged with offenses related to an alleged coup attempt in October 2004 reportedly were tortured before and during their questionable secret military trial in September. The group consisted of former military officers and relatives of the alleged leader of the attempted coup. Most of the defendants were held incommunicado in Bata Prison since their arrests in October and November 2004. All but two of the defendants reportedly stated in court that they had been tortured in detention and some reportedly still bore visible marks. One man apparently had to be carried in and out of court as he was still unable to walk. One woman reportedly suffered from vaginal bleeding as a result of torture. AI reported that statements were extracted by torture during incommunicado detention at Bata Prison and used as evidence (see section 1.d.).

No action was taken, nor is any expected to be taken, against the responsible authorities for the following 2004 cases: the torture of five persons arrested on Corisco Island; the shooting of Popular Party (PP) leader, Marcelino Manuel Nguema Esono; the torture of Weja Chicampo; and the torture of Lieutenant Colonel Maximiliano Owono Nguema. Weja Chicampo, Marcelino Esono, and Maximiliano Nguema apparently remained in jail at year's end.

No action was taken against members of the security forces responsible for the 2003 of torture of opposition leader Felipe Ondo Obiang.

Freedom House Country Report - Political Rights: 7   Civil Liberties: 7   Status: Not Free

2009 Edition

[accessed 24 January 2013]

LONG URL   ç 2009 Country Reports begin on Page 21

[accessed 12 May 2020]

The judiciary is not independent, and security forces generally act with impunity. Civil cases rarely go to trial, and military tribunals handle national security cases. In March 2008, a military trial began for more than 100 people, including security personnel, who were accused of looting the property of Cameroonian residents following a bout of crime allegedly perpetuated by foreigners in December 2007. Prison conditions, especially in the notorious Black Beach prison, are extremely harsh. The authorities have been accused of widespread human rights abuses, including torture, detention of political opponents, and extrajudicial killings. The UN Human Rights Council’s Working Group on Arbitrary Detention cited the country in a 2007 report for holding detainees in secret, denying them access to lawyers, and jailing them for long periods without charge. In 2008, a mission by the special rapporteur on the question of torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment was rescheduled for November after the government canceled a February visit. The special rapporteur issued a statement following his visit, noting systematic torture and appalling conditions for detainees.

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Cite this webpage as: Patt, Prof. Martin, "Torture by Police, Forced Disappearance & Other Ill Treatment in the early years of the 21st Century- Equatorial Guinea",, [accessed <date>]