Independence of judges & lawyers

WORLD: Urgent Appeals Programme – celebrating 20 years of unique resistance

Statement | World | 29-09-2017

Twenty years ago, when the Asian Human Rights Commission’s (AHRC) Urgent Appeals Programme started, we embarked on a new venture to demonstrate the potential of the Urgent Appeals in creating a culture that respects the sufferings of the victims, and to create a counter culture of concern and protest. It is time now to assess […]

WORLD: AHRC urgent appeals celebrates its 20th year

Statement | World | 28-09-2017

Asian Human Rights Commission is proud to announce that it is today celebrating the twentieth anniversary of its Urgent Appeals Programme. The first urgent appeal was issued on 17 September 1997. Ever since Asian Human Rights Commission’s Urgent Appeal Programme has continuously issued urgent appeals relating to human rights violations, reported from many countries of […]

PAKISTAN: UN critiques reprisals and intimidation suffered by human rights defenders

A new United Nations report (A/HRC/36/31) warns that a growing number of human rights defenders around the world are facing reprisals for cooperating with the UN on human rights. The report, ‘Cooperation with the United Nations, its mechanisms and representatives in the field of human rights’, mentions Pakistan among the 29 countries that have retaliated […]

SRI LANKA: නීතිඥ වෘත්තියේ හා අධිකරණ පද්ධතියේ වැරදි වසන් කිරීම නොව ඒවා නිවරදිකරවා ගැනීම කාටත් ප‍්‍රයෝජනවත් වනු ඇත.

ලංකාවේ සමස්ථ අධිකරණ පද්ධතියේ ප‍්‍රතිසංස්කරණ සම්බන්ධයෙන් දැන් මතුවී තිබෙන විවාදය මේ පිළිබඳව පැවතී ඇති සාකච්චා වල වැදගත් අවධියක් ලෙස සැලකිය හැකිය. රන්ජන් රාමනායක මහතා හා ලංකාවේ නීතිඥ සංගමය අතර ඇතිවූ විවාදයක් සේ මෙය පටන් ගැනුනත් මේ වන විට එය පළල් ක්ෂේත්රකයක් කරා පළල් වී ඇත. මේ පිළිබඳ මහජන අවධානයද ඉතා බලවත් ලෙසින් ඉස්මතු වී ඇත. සමස්ථ […]

SRI LANKA: Instead of being apologists for a failed system of justice, it is better to take initiatives for speedy reforms

Perhaps for the first time in the contemporary history of Sri Lanka, an important debate is now taking place on the need for judicial reforms. This debate has come about as a result of a statement made by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka with regard to a public statement made by Deputy Minister Ranjan […]

AHRC TV: Rohingya flee more violence in Rakhine and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 186

This week Just Asia begins with Burma, where fighting has broken out once again in the state of Rakhine. Clashes between Burmese security forces and Rohingya militants have led to some 89 people killed, including 12 security force personnel. This is the worst violence to hit the area since October 2016, when a military crackdown […]

AHRC TV: Protests in Hong Kong over sentencing of democracy activists and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 185

This week Just Asia begins with Hong Kong, where there is much protest and outrage against the jailing of three democracy activists for their role in the 2014 Umbrella Movement. Hong Kong’s High Court sentenced Joshua Wong, Nathan Law and Alex Chow to six-eight months imprisonment for the non-violent protest related crime of unlawful assembly […]

SRI LANKA: Lawyers, prosecutors and judges should face the mirror

A Press Release issued by the Bar Association of Sri Lanka has threatened contempt of Court action being taken against a deputy minister who has made some serious criticisms against the Courts and the legal profession. While it is not our intention to defend the deputy minister, we are perturbed by such threats against anyone […]

AHRC TV: Bangladesh police arrest persons in rape of teenager and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 183

This week Just Asia begins with Bangladesh, where police have arrested several persons involved in the rape and torture of a teenager, after pictures of the victim and her mother at hospital with shaved heads caused outrage. Tufan Sarkar, a unionist linked to the ruling Awami League party, has been charged with raping the 16-year-old at home on July […]

PAKISTAN: Without respect for law, legal profession will flounder

The darker side of Pakistan’s lawyers’ cartel has been exposed in the case of law student Khadija Siddiqui, who was stabbed 23 times by her class fellow, Shah Husain, the son of a senior Supreme Court lawyer. After this horrific attack, Khadija could not find a single lawyer to take up her case. Being the […]

SRI LANKA: Mr. Nagananda Kodituwakku speaks on the state of the judiciary in Sri Lanka

The Asian Human Rights Commission wishes to share a video clip of a speech made by Nagahawatte Kodithuwakku, a reputed lawyer on the state of judiciary in Sri Lanka. It is a thought provoking speech that should receive the attention of all who are concerned with serious problems facing democracy, rule of law and human rights in Sri Lanka. Click […]

SRI LANKA: When the law ceases to be a command that must be obeyed

By Basil Fernando A lawyer practicing in Negombo was abducted on the night of 12 July 2017 and taken to a deserted field. There six persons, two of whom were wearing camouflaged uniforms, beat him thoroughly on his back and his head, threatening him that, “you should not be messing with us,” and “you should […]

SRI LANKA: The death of Sub-Inspector Sarath Premachandra a Kafkaesque episode- විනිසුරු හැඬුවේ ඇයි?

උප පොලිස් පරීක්ෂක සරත් ප්රේtමචන්ද්රහගේ මරණය කෆ්කානු කතාවකි. එම්. ඉලන්චේලියන් විනිසුරු, ගතවූ දශක කිහිපය තුළ ශ්රීක ලංකාවෙන් බිහිවූ ශ්රේරෂ්ඨතම විනිසුරුවරයෙකි. තවමත් මහාධිකරණ විනිසුරුවරයෙක් වුවද, ඔහු උපරිමාධිකරණ විනිසුරුවරයෙකු වීමට වුව සුදුසු අයෙකි. එය එසේ වූවා නම් ඔහු උපරිමාධිකරණයේ ශ්රේධෂ්ඨ වත්කමක් වනවා පමණක් නොව ශ්රීු ලංකාවේ නීතිය හා සාමය සම්බන්ධයෙන් පවතින සතුට නූපදවන තත්ත්වය රැඩිකල් වෙනසකට භාජනය […]

SRI LANKA: The death of Sub-Inspector Sarath Premachandra a Kafkaesque episode

Justice M. Ilancheliyan is one of the greatest judges to be produced in Sri Lanka for the last many decades. He is still a High Court Judge, but he deserves to be raised to the Supreme Court. If that were to happen, he would be a great asset not only to the Supreme Court, but […]

AHRC TV: Supreme Court orders probe into Manipur killings and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 180

This week Just Asia begins with India, where the Supreme Court passed a historic judgment last Friday, ordering the Central Bureau of Investigation to probe into the allegations of ‘fake encounters’ by uniformed personnel in the conflict ridden state of Manipur. To ensure an impartial investigation, the Court ordered that no member of the Manipur […]

SRI LANKA: Weliamuna’s frank take on the state of the Judiciary

An interview with J.C. Weliamuna, President’s Counsel, Eisenhower Fellow, former Member of the Transparency International Global Board, and Constitutional Law practitioner in Supreme Court for over 28 years, in an interview with the Daily FT shares a frank inside view into the status of the Judicial organ of the State today forwarded by the Asian […]

AHRC TV: Calls for resignation of Pakistan’s Nawaz Sharif amidst corruption charges and other stories in JUST ASIA, Episode 179

This week Just Asia begins with Pakistan, where Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been found guilty of corruption by the Supreme Court’s Joint Investigation Team. The team found the Sharif family wealth to be beyond their sources of income. The country’s political parties and Bar Associations are now demanding Sharif’s resignation. Moving to Burma, the […]

SRI LANKA: How some lawyers trivialise legal proceedings

“Fr. Nandana Manatunga tortured the victim…” claims President’s Counsel, Mr. Nalin Ladduwahetty in his defence of a police constable in a torture case. The case of torture of Mr. Daundalage Pushpakumara came up today at the Court of Appeal in Sri Lanka. The court was considering a petition filed by Pushpakumara, seeking leave to appeal in […]

SRI LANKA: The Sinhala Translation of the Report of the UN Special Rapporteur for the independence of Judges and Lawyers

READ FULL REPORT – HERE ලංකාවට අවශ්‍ය අධිකරණමය සංශෝධන එක්සත් ජාතීන්ගේ මණ්ඩලයේ විනිශ්චයකාරවරුන්ගේ හා නීතිඥයන්ගේ ස්වාධීනත්වය පිලිබඳ සුවිශේෂ වර්තකාරිය වන මොනිකා පිටෝ විසින් ඇය ලංකාවට පැමිණි දුත ගමනින් පසු සකස්කොට නිකුත් කොට ඇති නිල වාර්තාව.  මහ ලේකම් කාර්යාලයේ සටහන 2016 අප්‍රේල් 29 සිට මැයි 7 වෙනි දින දක්වා ශ්‍රී ලංකාව තුල කල දුත ගමනේදී සකස් කරනු ලැබූ විනිසුරුවරුන් හා නීතිඥයන්ගේ ස්වාධීන බව […]

PAKISTAN: Human rights lawyers verbally and physically abused in court over case involving other lawyers

A Statement from Front Line Defenders forwarded by the Asian Human Rights Commission On 20 June 2017, human rights defenders Noor Ejaz Chaudhry, Usama Malik and Shabir Hussain were abused and beaten by a large group of lawyers in the courtroom of the Lahore High Court. The three lawyers are part of the defenceteam led by […]