Executive Summary

Kiribati is a constitutional multiparty republic. The president exercises executive authority. Following legislative elections, the House of Assembly nominates three or four presidential candidates from among its members, and the public then elects the president for a four-year term. Citizens re-elected Taneti Maamau president in two-stage parliamentary and presidential elections in June 2020. Observers considered the elections to be free and fair, despite allegations of corruption and foreign influence throughout election campaigning.

The Police and Prisons Service, under the Ministry of Justice, maintains internal security. The country has no military force. Civilian authorities maintained effective control over police. Members of the security forces were not reported to have committed abuses.

Significant human rights issues included credible reports of: criminalization of consensual sexual activity between men, although the law was not enforced, and child labor.

The government took steps to investigate officials who committed human rights abuses, and impunity was not a problem. The government did not implement effectively the law criminalizing official corruption.

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U.S. Department of State

The Lessons of 1989: Freedom and Our Future