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UN human rights office alarmed by ‘attacks’ on judicial independence

The UN human rights office (OHCHR) is “very concerned” over recent attacks against judicial independence in Haiti, as the country is gripped by political and institutional instability, a spokesperson said on Friday.

“These developments cause concerns about judicial independence and have further eroded the separation of powers in Haiti,” Liz Throssell said at a regular media briefing at the UN Office at Geneva.

Ms. Throssell stressed that respecting the rule of law and the system of checks and balances at all times is paramount.

“It is even more crucial now given the growing political tensions and the increasing expression of dissent in demonstrations”, she said.

OHCHR called on the Haitian authorities to ensure respect for the established legal and institutional framework, and to comply with their obligations under the country’s Constitution and international human rights treaties, she added.

“We urge the Government and opposition to engage in a meaningful and inclusive dialogue to avoid further escalation of tensions, and to resolve the current political and institutional deadlock in a manner that is both lasting and sustainable”, Ms. Throssell said.

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