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ARTICLE 19 and partners report violations of freedom of expression and independence of Brazilian judges to the OAS

Brazilian organisations to present cases of judges who suffer sanctions due to judicial decisions that safeguard rights

This statement was originally published on article19.org on 24 May 2017.

Brazilian civil society organizations are today attending a hearing at the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights (IACHR), linked to the Organization of American States (OAS), to address disrespect for judicial independence and freedom of expression of judges.

The hearing is to bring to the attention of the commission information concerning judges who, because of their judicial decisions or comments on the guarantee of rights, have been subject to investigation procedures, informal warnings and criticisms, and other forms of harassment.

ARTICLE 19 and partner organizations will demonstrate that violations of the exercise of freedom of expression and the functional independence of members of the judiciary are recurrent in Brazil and represent serious violations of the American Convention on Human Rights.

For ARTICLE 19, targeting judges in this way for seeking to guarantee rights in their decisions harms the protection of human rights in Brazil and should be denounced at the international level.

Freedom of expression for the judiciary must be protected, not only in their judicial decisions, to ensure judicial independence in interpretations and guarantees of rights, but for their comments outside of these decisions.

The petitioning organisations at the hearing are ARTICLE 19, the Association of Judges for Democracy, Justice and Human Rights Campaign (JusDh), Conectas Human Rights, Due Process of Law Foundation and the Brazilian Institute of Criminal Sciences (IBCCrim).

The hearing was broadcast on the IACHR website and can now be accessed here.

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