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The absence of State liability in Asian countries

In countries throughout Asia there is a lack of adherence to the law, both domestic and international. Most Asian countries have institutionalized impunity. Not only must victims suffer such abuse and brutality from state officials, but they are further denied their rights when they attempt to seek redress. A London based human rights group notes that the absence of State liability for official human rights violations and the requirement for the State's consent for any legal action is in contravention of international obligations to grant an effective remedy.

What results is that those in power—political or institutional—do as they please, with no one to account to. Ordinary people live in instability and fear, lacking basic security for a normal existence. The institutions responsible for protecting people’s rights are malfunctioning, in many instances being themselves responsible for violating rights.

The state officials are rarely prosecuted and punished for their abuse of human rights; in other words, no effective remedies exist, including reparations. In turn, this encourages further abuse of rights. This is the case even though countries are party to international human rights covenants and some even have corresponding domestic legislation, however inadequate. Even when laws exist, they are not properly enforced.

The perversion of laws and the malfunctioning of institutions the cases above portray are only too common throughout the region. Amazingly, the collapse of effective rule of law in the region and its bleak human rights situation are rarely looked at as two sides of the same coin. In fact, the obstacle of ineffective rule of law is disconnected from that of human rights. As soon as such a disconnection is made however, human rights become a meaningless subject to the ordinary citizen.

The police for instance, are seen as criminals in most Asian countries rather than law enforcers. They are largely associated with intimidation, political influence, violence and impunity, which encourages crime and corruption in society and destroys people’s faith in legal redress.

The prosecution system is also defective in most countries. A prosecutor’s duty is to uphold the principles of due process by acting on their basis alone. Applying criminal principles defined by law, the prosecutor must examine evidence and charge those where there is sufficient evidence of the commission of a crime. To do this, the prosecutor must have legal and actual power. In many Asian countries however, this is not the case.

By this base case, the Abu Dhabi (UAE) authority cowardly committed cruelty and discrimination against an Indian, a victim of police brutality. On the other hand, both the courts in Abu Dhabi, including Supreme Court, the legal court of appeal, were fully satisfied and praised the conduct of the victim throughout the judicial proceedings. It's also worth noting that due to various considerations, economic and political, the countries from where people migrate do not protect their citizens.

Perhaps the one common feature of this region is the large discrepancy between law and practice. Again the lack of regional human rights mechanisms and the refusal, in practice, to submit to individual complaints mechanisms, leaves survivors with extreme difficulties in gaining any reparation.

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Prospects:- International human rights treaties and instruments provide that victims of international crimes have the right to seek and obtain effective remedies for the violation of their rights. In honouring the victims’ right to benefit from remedies and reparation, the international community keeps faith with the plight of victims, survivors and future human generations and reaffirms international law in the field...International Courts and Tribunals


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