South Asians for Human Rights

Promoting Democracy, Upholding Human Rights

The Declaration on the Rule of Law made by the International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) in Athens in 19551 states that a State is subject to the law and that judges should be guided by the Rule of Law, ensure its protection and enforcement without fear or favour in addition to resisting any encroachments by Government or political parties in the task of adjudicating justice. Upholding these values is paramount for good governance and fundamental rights of the people of a country.

However recent incidents that involved both the police and judiciary have raised serious concerns about whether the values of the above declaration are upheld in Sri Lanka. This became the subject of discussion in Parliament in July with some alleged instances of politicians disregarding the law or attempts to interpret the law in a self‐ serving manner in violation of the citizens’ collective rights.

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