Institute for Justice and Democracy in Haiti

Dominican Republic Puts Vulnerable Citizens at Risk

A recent ruling by the Dominican Republic Constitutional Court could lead to DR’s withdrawal from the Inter-American Court of Human Rights. This follows continued controversy over a September 2013 ruling that stripped thousands of Dominicans of Haitian descent of their rights. Now, advocates fear that these and other vulnerable citizens will be even more at risk without an international body to turn to when their rights aren’t respected at home.

Part of the article is below. Click HERE for the full text.

Dominican Republic: Withdrawal from top regional human rights court would put rights at risk

Amnesty International
November 6, 2014

Dominicans of Haitian descent demonstrating for their rights in front of the Dominican congress in Santo Domingo.

The appalling ruling by the Dominican Republic’s Constitutional Court that could to lead to the country’s withdrawal from the Inter American Court of Human Rights would, if supported by the government, deprive hundreds of thousands of survivors of human rights abuses from any hope of justice, said Amnesty International.

“With this latest judgement, the Constitutional Court of the Dominican Republic has confirmed its lack of independence and impartiality, proving it to be politically biased by defending narrow interests,” said Erika Guevara Rosas, Americas Director at Amnesty International.

“Depriving people of the opportunity of finding justice abroad when it is denied at home would not only be outrageous but also a worrying step back in the country’s strengthening of the rule of law.”

The judgment comes only two weeks after the Inter-American Court of Human Rights ruled against a Dominican Republic’s judicial decision that stripped thousands of Dominicans of Haitian descent living in the country of their nationality in a discriminatory way.


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