Pacific Charter of Human Rights
Under the auspices of LAWASIA, some 20 delegates from Micronesia, Polynesia, Melanesia, Australia and New Zealand examined a report of experts and subsequently arrived with the following proposed charter which was adopted in Apia, Western Samoa, 15-17 May 1989. The following extracts are reprinted from "Report on a proposed Pacific Charter of Human Rights prepared under the auspices of LAWASIA", (1992) 22 Victoria University of Wellington Law Review 99. The full text of the Charter can also be found in "Asia-Pacific Human Rights Documents and Resources", Fernand de Varennes (Ed.), Volume 1, Kluwer Law International, The Hague, 1998.
Every individual shall be entitled to the enjoyment of the rights and freedoms recognised and guaranteed in the present Charter without distinction of any kind such as race, ethnic group, colour, sex, language, religion, political or any other opinion, national and social origin, economic status, birth or other status.
(2) Every person who is charged with a criminal offence has the right:
(h) to have the free assistance of an interpreter if the person cannot understand or speak the language used in court;
In those Parties in which ethnic, religious or minorities exist, persons belonging to such minorities shall not be denied the right, in community with other members of their group, to enjoy their own culture, to profess and practice their own religion, or to use their own language.