Administration of justice

UPDATE (Thailand): Special call for observers to attend September 7, 8 & 9 court hearings over missing human rights lawyer Somchai Neelaphaijit

[RE: FA-06-2004: THAILAND: A human rights lawyer Mr. Somchai Neelaphaijit missing… UP-20-2005: THAILAND: Human rights lawyer still missing after nearly one year; Action needed today to have case transferred; UP-24-2005: THAILAND: Thai minister refuses to act on missing human rights lawyer case; UP-37-2005: Thai PM orders action on missing human rights lawyer, while court hears […]

UPDATE (Indonesia): House of Representatives must recommend the establishment of an ad-hoc human rights court on the Trisakti/Semanggi killings in its coming plenary session

[RE: UA-23-2002: Sign petition for attorney general to bring justice to May 1998 riot victims; UP-81-2005: INDONESIA: Attorney General Refuses to investigate gross violations of human rights that were committed at Trisakti/Semanggi.] Dear Friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received updated information from the Commission for the Disappeared and Victims of Violence (Kontras) […]

UPDATE (India): Wait for justice continues after ten years; Vacant court denies justice to a handicapped woman

[Re: UA-07-2005: INDIA: Handicapped torture and rape victim waits ten years for justice. Ms. Hasna Mondal, a handicapped woman, from East Daukimari, District Jalpaiguri, West Bengal is still waiting for the perpetrators to be punished, ten years after the brutal incident. A complaint which was filed the day after the incident, on 28 February 1995, […]

UPDATE (Philippines): Prosecutor’s failure to ensure appearance of its complainants and witnesses postpones trial of five men

Dear friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received updated information from a reliable source that the hearing of five men in Davao City on July 25 was once again postponed. This is yet another incident of the prosecutor’s failure to ensure that its complainants and witnesses appeared for scheduled hearings. In June, the […]

INDIA: Non-cooperation by police in the case of a young man’s death in West Bengal

Dear friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information from MASUM, a human rights organisation in West Bengal about the local police in Jalangi, Murshidabad District, not only shielding all the accused in a murder case but also fabricating a case against the victim. On 15 October 2004, Subhash Mondal and his elder […]

UPDATE (Thailand): Repeated failed commitment to assign Department of Special Investigation to Somchai case

[RE: FA-06-2004: THAILAND: A human rights lawyer Mr. Somchai Neelaphaijit missing; UA-94-2004: Severe torture victims still in custody while police torturers remain in posts; UP-14-2004: Mr. Somchai Neelaphaijit is still missing and the police may be involved in his disappearance; UP-26-2004: 5 suspects in the alleged abduction of missing human rights lawyer Mr. Somchai Neelaphaijit […]

UPDATE (India): No compensation to family of adivasi, murdered by forest official, despite a four year wait

[Re: UA- 50 -2005: INDIA: Three and a half year wait for justice for the brutal murder of an Adivasi (tribal person) by a forest official in Gujarat] Dear friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) has received information on the case of Manishbhai Motibhai Vasava (30), an adivasi who was murdered by an Indian […]

SRI LANKA: A court magistrate receives death threats prior to giving evidence in an inquiry

Dear friends, The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) is gravely concerned by another threat made against a judge in Sri Lanka. According to the information we have received, former Magistrate of Wellawaya Magistrates’ Court, Janaka Bandara has recently received death threats by way of phone calls from unknown persons. These threats come prior to the […]

SRI LANKA: Immediate protection required for threatened court magistrate

Just as the trial into the murder of High Court Judge Sarath Ambipitiya has concluded, another judge, former Magistrate of Wellawaya Magistrate’s Court, Janaka Bandara has received death threats. The threats, which came by way of telephone call, demanded that the magistrate resign from the Judicial Service and refrain from attending an inquiry to be […]

SRI LANKA: A street movement to fight zero justice in Sri Lanka

The Asian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) expresses serious concern about the visible loss of interest in torture cases by the Attorney General’s Department. While the government and its officials may have lost interest in the issue of torture, this apathy is not apparent in the people of the country who will begin a series of […]

SRI LANKA: Ambepitiya murder trial — lessons to be learned

A High Court judge, Sarath Ambipitiya, was assassinated on the 21st November 2004.  Within seven months the criminal investigations and the trial were completed with a three member trial at bar finding the suspects guilty and sentencing them to death.  According to reports the trial took 25 days for completion.   Perhaps this, the speediest […]

PHILIPPINES: Witness protection key to addressing unrestrained killings in Philippines

It is becoming increasingly obvious that getting away with murder in the Philippines is made easy by the absence of any functioning witness protection scheme. The lack of witnesses also becomes a convenient excuse for investigators to say that they have done their jobs but have no further avenues for action.   In a May […]

INDONESIA: Attorney general must take up responsibility to prosecute criminals in Indonesia

The last decade has seen numerous gross human rights violations in Indonesia that have been widely reported by local activists as well as international groups. Of particular concern has been the lack of prosecution of the perpetrators. The Asian Human Rights Commission has previously stated its own alarm at the lack of action taken by […]

THAILAND: Defamation charges against forensic scientist protect reputation of no one, damage reputation of Thailand

Strange news has been coming from Thailand, where five police have filed defamation complaints against a reputed forensic pathologist and senior government bureaucrat after they suggested that a man with five bullets in his vital organs probably didn’t shoot himself. The death of Sunthorn Wongdao on May 21 has captured public imagination since the police […]

THAILAND: Thai police are in no position to dispute the findings of forensic scientists

A recent killing in Thailand has brought to the surface some of the deep contradictions in the country’s criminal justice system. Sunthorn Wongdao was found dead in Bang Yai district, Nonthaburi province, on May 21. Sunthorn is said to have hidden in a house after being accused of shooting his wife and father-in-law in Bang […]

SRI LANKA: Better management could address Sri Lanka’s delays in justice

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE June 15, 2005 AS-63-2005 A Statement by the Asian Human Rights Commission Better management could address Sri Lanka’s delays in justice  That Sri Lanka’s criminal justice system has a conviction rate of only about four per cent is often noted. The primary cause for this dismal rate, which is less often noted, […]

NEPAL: U.N. mission to Nepal: money arrives; time to act

Statement | Nepal | 29-05-2005

On May 26, the Danish government announced that it has earmarked 4.5 million Danish Krone (US$ 750,000) for the new office of the U.N. High Commission on Human Rights in Nepal. The office will use this money over the coming two years for active monitoring and investigating of gross rights abuses occurring on the ground […]

SRI LANKA: The Bindunuwewa Massacre and Sri Lanka’s defective justice system

On 25 October 2000, more than 25 young Tamils at a rehabilitation centre in Bindunuwewa near Bandarawela in the south-central part of the island were attacked and killed by a Sinhalese group.  Who were the actual culprits?  Who were their masterminds?  To these questions Sri Lanka’s justice system has no answers.   Likewise, after nearly […]

SRI LANKA: Another innocent man is killed by police torture? who will be the next victim?

The case of Don Wijerathna Munasinghe, who was arrested on 10 April 2005 and subsequently died of injuries allegedly received at the Maharagama Police Station, received wide publicity in the media.?The alleged reason for his arrest was that he did not stop his three-wheeler vehicle when instructed to do so by the police.?The following morning […]

PHILIPPINES: Unrestrained killings of activists in Philippines demand immediate government action

Since January 2005, at least 18 human rights and political activists have killed or disappeared in the Philippines. The latest reported attack was on Alden Ambida, a provincial coordinator of the opposition Bayan Muna party in Eastern Samar this April 11. He is now fighting for his life in hospital. In March, three other Bayan […]