The person who is tortured, is usually tortured because he or she has some information the other people want. Torture has in the past also served as a punishment. In 1600 Anton Praetorius fought against torture and against the hunting of witches.
Almost all countries agree that torture is a violation of human rights. This has been stated in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. It is more difficult for people to agree what things are torture and what things are okay to do to prisoners.
Torture is a crime in many countries and it was made against the law on December 10th, 1948.