GENEVA (2 November 2023) – A UN expert today expressed grave concern at the prospect of the removal of members of the National Board of Justice (JNJ) by the Peruvian Congress.

“The right to a fair trial requires an impartial judge. In Peru, this impartiality is closely linked to the free and independent functioning of the National Board of Justice,” said Margaret Satterthwaite, Special Rapporteur on the independence of judges and lawyers.

The JNJ plays the role of a judicial council, which are essential bodies to ensure judicial independence and separation of powers, Satterthwaite said. The Peruvian Congress is reportedly considering a report, that is itself the product of a summary proceeding, and recommends the removal of members of the JNJ for “serious cause”.

“I note with concern that the information I have received indicates “serious cause” is not codified in any national law, so its application could lend itself to various potentially arbitrary interpretations,” the Special Rapporteur said. The members of the JNJ have filed an amparo action related to this procedure that has been admitted and is being processed in the judiciary.

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