A judge has ordered Jean-Claude "Baby Doc" Duvalier to appear in court after the former Haitian leader defied an order to attend a hearing that aimed to determine whether he should again face charges for human rights abuses committed during his nearly 15 years in power.

A prosecutor said on Thursday that the judge's order required Duvalier to appear in court in Port-au-Prince next Thursday.

A lower court judge had ruled in January last year that Duvalier should face charges only on alleged financial crimes rather than rights abuses allegedly committed by his government.

That decision came in a formal investigation of Duvalier after he returned to Haiti two years ago following 25 years in exile.

Thousands were imprisoned, tortured or killed during Duvalier's rule between 1971 and 1986 for opposing the government. He was toppled in a popular revolt.

Al Jazeera's Rachel Levin reports from the capital Port-au-Prince.

Source: Agencies