UN expert to examine judicial independence in Italy

UN expert to examine judicial independence in Italy

A United Nations expert on judicial independence judiciary will travel to Italy next week to discuss allegations that the government of that country has tried to undermine the freedom of its judges and magistrates.

The UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, Dato Param Cumaraswamy, plans to visit Italy from 12 to 14 March to meet government officials and senior magistrates, including the Chief Prosecutor of the Supreme Court and the Ministers for Justice and for the Interior. The meetings will take place in Rome and Milan, the UN Office in Geneva announced today.

Earlier this year, Mr. Cumaraswamy wrote to the Italian Government expressing concern about the allegations of interference, and the nationwide protests by hundreds of magistrates that marked the beginning of Italy's judicial year. An invitation to undertake an official visit followed his letter.

The Special Rapporteur hopes to present his report on the outcome of his visit to the UN Commission on Human Rights at its next session, which opens on 4 April in Geneva.