FORUM-ASIA and the Center for Human Rights and Development Demand the Release of Kh. Bat-Yalalt
23 August 2007 7:00 pm

The Mongolian government has tried to stifle justice by detaining a human rights defender. FORUM-ASIA and the Center for Human Rights and Development (CHRD), FORUM-ASIA member, demand the release of Mr. Kh. Bat-Yalalt and condemn the Mongolian government for denying justice to their people.
The Asian Forum for Human Rights and Development (FORUM-ASIA) and the Center for Human Rights and Development (CHRD), a FORUM-ASIA member are demanding the immediate release of the founder of the Citizens’ Just Court, Mr. Kh.Bat-Yalalt, who was sentenced to imprisonment by the Chingeltei District Court on 10 August 2007.

Mr Kh.Bat-Yalalt, founder of the Citizens’ Just Court, filed an application for the registration of the said organisation with the Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs early in May this year. However, the application was denied allegedly on the ground that its name contains the word “court”, which the Ministry claims can only be used by a state institution. The Citizen’s Just Court aims to promote and protect the rights of victims of unlawful court decisions in Mongolia.

On 12 June 2007, Mr. Kh. Bat-Yalalt led a demonstration to protest the denial of the application for registration in front of the building of the Ministry of Justice and Home Affairs. Allegedly, state security forces tried to force back the protesters when they attempted to enter the building and a scuffle ensued. Mr. Kh.Bat-Yalalt was charged for damage caused upon the door of the building and for making a disturbance inside the Ministry Building. Mr. Kh. Bat-Yalalt allegedly fought with the police officers during the demonstration. On 10 August 2007, the Chingeltei District Court rendered a decision ordering his detention for 30 days.

In a letter to Mongolia’s Minister of Justice and Home Affairs on 29 June 2007, FORUM-ASIA urged the Ministry to respect the freedom of association by allowing the Citizens’ Just Court to be a duly-registered non-governmental organization under Mongolian law. The denial of the application is contrary to Article 22 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights (ICCPR). It also contravenes the principle embodied in the UN Declaration on Human Rights Defenders that everyone has the right to form, join, and participate in non-governmental organisations, associations, or groups for the purpose of promoting and protecting human rights and fundamental freedoms.

FORUM-ASIA and CHRD are condemning the Mongolian Government for the denial of the registration of the Citizens’ Just Court , the organisation is still not registered and its founders foresee more persecutions of its members in the future.

In solidarity,

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Anselmo Lee
Executive Director

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G.Urantsooj
Chairperson
Center for Human Right and Development

For further information, please contact:

Emerlynne Gil, Program Officer of the Human Rights Defenders Programme (email: em@forum-asia.org, tel. no. +66 (0)2 391 8801 ext. 605).
Erdenechimeg Dashdorj, Fellow of the Northeast Asia Country Programme ( chimgee@forum-asia.org, tel.no. +66 (0)2 391 8801 ext. 602)