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Haiti pledges to combat prolonged pre-trial detention

Haitian Justice minister, Berto Dorce

Haiti pledges to combat prolonged pre-trial detention

Port-au-Prince, Dec 20 (Prensa Latina) The Haitian Justice minister, Berto Dorce, assured today that the fight against prolonged preventive detention is a priority of the government of Ariel Henry. Dorce, who took office at the end of November replacing Litz Quitel, also pointed out that they are working to eradicate this phenomenon.
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It is estimated that nearly 85 percent of the prison population has not had access to justice, and some of the inmates can go up to a decade without being heard by a judge or contacted by a lawyer.

In April of this year, the United Nations deplored the increase in prolonged pretrial detention and stressed that it threatens the very foundations of the rule of law.

It also criticized the inhuman and degrading treatment in the country’s overcrowded prisons and encouraged the authorities to reduce prison overcrowding.

For several years, Haiti’s prisons have been operating at three times their capacity, amid recurrent strikes by judicial system employees, insecurity, political and health crises.

In this context, prolonged pretrial detention grew by nine percent from 2020 to 2021, and it is estimated that the figure will be even higher in the balance of this year, after the strike of several months of prosecutors and judges, in addition to the rise in insecurity.

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