Param Cumaraswamy

2005 Justice Prize

Laureate Profile

In his native Malaysia and in various of the world’s hot spots, attorney Param Cumaraswamy, at considerable risk to himself, has stood up for human dignity and the independence of the judiciary, which, he believes is what distinguishes a democracy from a totalitarian state. A UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, his conviction are gleaned from years of study, observation, and diligent investigations into attacks on the judiciary in more than 100 countries, as well as from his own personal experience, which includes being tried for sedition, being barred from entering Singapore, and receiving death threats.