Australian Permanent Mission and Consulate-General
Geneva, Switzerland
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Universal Periodic Review Working Group – 17th Session
Universal Periodic Review of Dominican Republic
Statement by Australia

5 February 2014

Australia welcomes Dominican Republic’s reforms to strengthen its human rights framework.

We remain concerned by continued reports of human rights violations by law enforcement officials. We recommend all law enforcement be conducted in accordance with international human rights standards and that the Dominican Republic undertakes prompt independent investigations into all cases of alleged violations by officials.

Australia welcomes the progress the Dominican Republic has made on gender based violence and inequality. Australia recommends the Dominican Government strengthen services aimed at protecting women, children and other marginalised or vulnerable groups.

We are concerned by the September 2013 Constitutional court judgement which introduced a retroactive and restrictive interpretation of nationality provisions that largely targets persons of Haitian origin. We recommend the naturalisation law include all persons of foreign descent proving birth in the Dominican Republic before 2010, whether registered or not, be given state identity documents. This is in accordance to the jurisprudence of the Inter American Court of Human Rights.

We also recommend all rights be restored retroactively to those affected by the Constitutional Court judgement and that they be given prompt and non-discriminatory means to acquire their Dominican Republic citizenship.

We are concerned about the treatment of migrant workers through the deportation process. We recommend ending mass arbitrary expulsion of migrant workers and to ensure that their human rights are respected in all deportation processes.