ECHR Factsheet on the Right to a Fair Trial and Legal Counsel

May 23rd, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

Jointly with the Grand Chamber judgement on the case Simeonovi v. Bulgaria, the European Court of Human Rights Press Unit published on 12 May 2017 a factsheet with an overview of cases related to police arrest and assistance of a lawyer, based on judgements on art. 6 § 3 (c) – right to legal assistance and art. 6 § 1 – right to a fair trial. You can find the factsheet here.

ICJ Principles on the Role of Judges and Lawyers in relation to Refugees and Migrants

May 10th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

The International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) has developed and published a document that aims to better secure human rights and the rule of law in the context of large movements of refugees and migrants. The Principles on the Role of Judges and Lawyers in relation to Refugees and Migrants has been prepared in consultation with senior judges, lawyers and legal scholars and it is intended to help judges and lawyers, as well as legislators and other government officials. Read more about the document here. 

Violations of lawyers’ rights in Georgia

May 2nd, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

On 26 April the CCBE addressed a letter to several authorities in Georgia regarding cases of violations of lawyer’s rights. The letter is based on reports from the Georgian Bar Association detailing circumstances in which lawyers were abused while discharging their functions and harassed or intimidated while defending their clients. The CCBE shared the concerns of the Georgian Bar Association and stands by their call to the Georgian Parliament to tackle the ongoing attacks against lawyers. Read the full letter here.

Protection of Threatened Lawyers

May 2nd, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

On 30 March, the CCBE and ProtectDefenders.eu organised a joint workshop entitled “How to improve the protection of threatened lawyers worldwide? Practical tools from the EU Human Rights Defenders mechanism”. At the workshop, the new online platform “Index of attacks and threats against Human Rights Defenders” created by the European Union Human Rights Defenders Mechanism, was launched.

ProtectDefenders.eu is the European Union Human Rights Defenders mechanism, established to protect defenders at high risk and facing the most difficult situations worldwide. It is led by a Consortium of 12 NGOs active in the field of Human Rights.

CCJE opinion on draft act on the Polish National Council of the Judiciary

April 20th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

The Consultative Council of European Judges (CCEJ) has made public their requested opinion on the Draft Act amending the Act of 12 May 2011 on the Polish National Council of the Judiciary and certain other acts. The CCEJ state that they are deeply concerned by the implications of the Draft Act for the constitutional principle of separation of powers as well as that of the independence of the judiciary. The CCEJ considers that the Draft Act would be a major step backward from real judicial independence in Poland. Read the full opinion here.

Albania: Statement by High Representative Federica Mogherini and Commissioner Johannes Hahn

April 18th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

“We expect that Members of the Parliament will show responsibility, capacity to act within the democratic legitimate institutional framework, and that they stand by the people of Albania, who continue to demand that the vetting is launched and the judiciary eventually reformed, also as a crucial step for the country to join the European Union.”

Read here the full statement of 12/04/2017.

Independence of the judiciary in Poland

April 6th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

The Council of Europe’s Commissioner for Human Rights has addressed an open letter to the Polish Parliament’s lower chamber. The letter calls the Sejm representatives to reject the proposed amendments to the Act on the National Council for the Judiciary, due to concerns over the independence of the judiciary. Read the announcement here.

‘Defence of the defenders’ letters to Ukraine and Bosnia and Herzegovina

March 28th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

The CCBE addressed two letters of concern to authorities in Ukraine and Bosnia and Herzegovina. On 28 February, the CCBE sent a letter regarding physical attacks on lawyers in Bosnia and Herzegovina. On 16 March, another letter was sent to Ukraine, concerning the killings of lawyers Tetyana Popova and Valery Rybalchenko.

Human Rights Defenders Workshop

March 22nd, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

The CCBE’s Human Rights Committee organises together with the European Union Human Rights Defenders Mechanism the workshop “How to improve the protection of threatened lawyers worldwide? Practical tools from the EU Human Rights Defenders mechanism”. The event is set to take place in Brussels the 30 March 2017. The workshop will look at international and European mechanism for protection of threatened lawyers. See the agenda of the event here.

This event is open to all and particularly to Bars and Law Societies, lawyers organisations, human rights organisations and individual lawyers whom are active in the support of threatened lawyers. Registration is required by sending a mail to the following address: event@ccbe.eu by Wednesday 22 March.

 

Moldova- Association Agreement Report 2017

March 15th, 2017 § 0 comments § permalink

EEAS has published on the 13 March the 2017 report on the implementation of the Association Agreement between the EU and Moldova. The report is based on the Association Agenda and the steps taken to implement reforms as per the agreed areas of cooperation. The first area “Political dialogue, good governance and strengthening institutions” concerns, inter alia, the subject of human rights and fundamental freedoms, which the report concludes requires tackling weaknesses in the justice sector. It is also pointed out: “Perceived political interference in the judiciary and law enforcement is a systemic impediment to social and economic development. There have also been instances of judges being prosecuted for their decisions. The same goes for lawyers engaged in high-profile cases. The EU and other international partners have questioned the wide-spread use of pre-trial detention, especially in cases linked to participation in demonstrations.” Read the full document here.

The CCBE has received several reports from the Moldovan Bar Association of cases in which professional rights of lawyer were breached. A letter addressed to public authorities in Moldova regarding these cases was sent beginning January 2017.