NCHR calls for release of detained activists

(Photo: Jordan News)
AMMAN — The National Center for Human Rights (NCHR) has called for the release of recently arrested activists, saying in a statement carried by Ammon News that in accordance with Article 114 of Jordan’s penal code “arrest is an exceptional measure, and should not happen except in accordance with specific conditions.”اضافة اعلان

According to the statement the NCHR contended that it has been closely following the arrest of a number of activists in various regions of the Kingdom, and emphasized that “the right to free expression is a basic building block for any true democratic society” because it guarantees individuals the right to participation in decisions that impact them.

“Guaranteeing the practice of free expression supports stability and security, and strengthens the diversity and vitality of society. This right has been protected on a national level by Article 25 of the Jordanian constitution, as well as by international human rights, foremost among them is Article 19 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights,” the statement said.

“That covenant placed conditions on restricting the right to free expression by the state, most importantly, these restrictions are clearly expressed in the law and should serve a legitimate purpose, and any punishment should be proportional to the act committed” the statement added.

Furthermore, the statement highlighted that Article 9 (3) of the covenant and international human rights in general state that people should not be detained before trial because the act of detaining someone contradicts the constitutional principle of innocent until proven guilty.

The center emphasized here the need to “adhere to national legal grounds, namely Article 114 of the penal code, which states that arrest is an exceptional measure and should not happen except in accordance with specific conditions and justifications,” the statement added.

The NCHR noted that the vague nature of some national legislation has greatly contributed to broadening the scope of criminalized acts, and formed restrictions on freedom of expression, in contradiction with Article 25 of the Jordanian constitution. Article 128 (1) of the constitution also affirms that laws may not affect basic rights.

The center called for a review of legislation related to free expression, guarantees to practice that right in various forms, like writing, publishing, commenting, and assembling in parallel with Jordan’s efforts to modernize the political system.

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