Peace, justice & security

Rule of law

Security and a fair legal system contribute to a country’s national stability. This is particularly important if governance is weak. In some cases, the safety of civilians may be directly at risk. To promote national stability, the Netherlands also supports the establishment of courts and public authorities.

The rule of law is crucial in promoting peaceful and inclusive societies – to make great strides in sustainable development (SDG16). The UN describes the rule of law as the principle of governance in which all persons, institutions and entities, whether public or private and including the State itself, are subject to laws which are fairly applied and equally enforced.

Stimulating the improvement of international rule of law is a cornerstone of Dutch foreign policy, which is recorded in our constitution. We provide political support to stimulate the development of the international rule of law. The Netherlands also contributes financially, for example by supporting various tribunals and the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights. On the one hand, this policy aims to perfect the international rule of law, on the other hand it works to maintain and optimise the functioning of the system. Furthermore, the Netherlands also strives towards a bigger role for the International Court of Justice, and more awareness of the work of both the International Criminal Court and the Permanent Court of Arbitration.

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