Related Posts: Access to Justice

In The News

Firing of Foreign Judges in Timor-Leste Threatens Justice System

October 29, 2014

In a dramatic challenge to the principles of democracy, on Friday night, the parliament of Timor-Leste decided in a closed session to fire all foreign judges and advisers in its justice system. The National Parliament passed Resolution No. 11/2014, calling on the government to audit the justice sector and immediately terminate all existing contracts of at least 11 international judges and prosecutors, as well as other international staff in the Courts, Public Prosecutor’s Office, Public Defender’s Office, Anti-Corruption Commission, and the Legal Training Center. In response, the government quickly passed Resolution No. 29/2014, an echo of Resolution No. 11. The stated legal basis for the resolutions was force majeure and “national interest” – but it’s unclear whether either is applicable in this case.

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Notes from the Field

Indonesian Lawsuit Pushes Local Government to Regulate Massive Coal Mining Industry

October 15, 2014

In last week’s In Asia, I examined the growing environmental and social costs that the coal mining industry is having on Indonesia’s East Kalimantan province, home to 28 percent of Indonesia’s total coal reserves. Already, 6.6 million hectares have been allocated for mining across the province, and in the provincial capital…

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In The News

Polling Shows Encouraging Climate of Opinion for Mindanao Peace Negotiations

October 8, 2014

On September 10, Philippine President Benigno Aquino personally turned over the draft Basic Law based on the Comprehensive Agreement on the Bangsamoro to Congress after months of revisions and refinement. The move continues the roadmap set forth in negotiations…

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In The News

Khmer Rouge Sentence a Milestone, but Cambodia’s Justice System Remains Fragile

September 3, 2014

The Extraordinary Chambers in the Court of Cambodia last month sentenced two former senior Khmer Rouge leaders to life in prison for crimes against humanity. The Khmer Rouge’s 88-year-old chief ideologist and No. 2 leader, Nuon Chea, and its 83-year-old former head-of-state, Kheiu Samphan…

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In The News

Minorities within the Minority: Indigenous Communities in the Bangsamoro

August 6, 2014

In March this year, a major milestone passed in the 40-year effort to end hostilities in the Philippines between the national government and Muslim separatist fronts. The government and the Moro Islamic Liberation Front (MILF) signed a Comprehensive…

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Notes from the Field

Photo Blog: Myanmar Parliamentary Study Tour to Korea

May 14, 2014

The first session of the Myanmar’s Parliament was held in January 2011, but the legislative body has been extraordinarily busy catching up on a long list of laws that need to be updated, revised, or established anew to meet the country’s democratic transition…

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Notes from the Field

Photo Blog: Legal Aid Delivers Justice in Indonesia

May 7, 2014

Millions of poor and marginalized Indonesians live without the full protection of the law. Securing access to justice for these citizens is a vital component of reducing poverty and vulnerability and delivering democratic governance.

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In The News

Human Rights Protection in Modern Cambodia: Building on Unstable Grounds

April 23, 2014

On January 3, ongoing street protests by garment workers in Cambodia’s capital, Phnom Penh, turned violent. Government troops opened fire into a crowd of civilians, killing four and leaving one person missing. A total of 23 civilians were arrested and 21 are still detained without bail.

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Notes from the Field

Access to Justice Constraints Fuel Conflict in Southern Thailand

April 23, 2014

Access to justice, security, and human rights protection rank among the core issues that fuel the protracted subnational conflict in southern Thailand and are central to the prospect of its future resolution. For the last decade, the southern border provinces of Yala, Narathiwat, and Pattani have faced a resurgence of an indigenous…

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Notes from the Field

A New Face of Policing in Timor-Leste

April 23, 2014

On March 27, the national police of Timor-Leste (PNTL) celebrated their 14th anniversary with full pomp and circumstance. For 24 years until 1999, the police in Timor were under the command of the Indonesia military. Now, it seems that memories of countrywide conflict and instability in this small tropical nation are receding.

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