International Standards: Judiciary

Judicial independence is a central element of the rule of law. Judges are also subject to the law. Judicial training, appointment and accountability mechanisms need to be rigorous and transparent.

The UN Basic Principles on the Independence of the Judiciary were endorsed by the General Assembly in 1985 by Resolution 40/32.

The Bangalore Principles were developed by the Judicial Group on Strengthening Judicial Integrity, a group of senior judges from eight African and Asian common law countries formed in 2000 under the auspices of the Global Programme Against Corruption of the UN Office of Drug Control and Crime Prevention in Vienna. The principles were subsequently adopted by a roundtable of chief justices from all major legal traditions in November 2002. Directed at judges themselves rather than the state, these principles are:

  • Independence
  • Impartiality
  • Integrity
  • Propriety
  • Equality
  • Competence and Diligence

The UN Office on Drugs and Crime has produced a Compendium of UN standards and norms in crime prevention and criminal justice including principles relevant to the operation of the judiciary.

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