The independence of the judiciary is an essential component of the right to a fair trial and the rule of law. The requirement of independence and impartiality of judges is not a prerogative or privilege granted in their own interest, but is justified by the need to enable judges to fulfil their role as guardians of the rule of law and of the human rights and fundamental freedoms of the people. As such, the independence of the judiciary should be regarded by every citizen as a guarantee of truth, freedom, respect for human rights and impartial justice free from external influence.

The independence of the judiciary is a corollary of the democratic principle of separation of powers, according to which the executive, the legislature and the judiciary constitute three separate and independent branches of government. According to this principle, different organs of the State have exclusive and specific responsibilities, and it is not permissible for any branch of power to interfere in the others’ spheres of control.