JCI Participation in the “Tashkent Law Spring” in Uzbekistan
From 24 to 30 April, the Director-General of JCI Ms Nicole COCHET, and Mr Adrien ELBE, Deputy Director of Operations, went on mission to Tashkent in Uzbekistan, with Ms Alexandra SAVIE, Head of the Office for Cooperation of the Delegation for European and International Affairs.
It was a response to the invitation from the Uzbek Ministry of Justice to attend the “Tashkent Law Spring“, organised for international lawyers. For its first edition, this biennial international conference brought together some 2000 lawyers and economists from around the world, with a strong US presence, and Asia-Pacific countries. The presentations and exchanges of these two days focused on a variety of subjects, with a general focus on economic law and investment, but also strongly pointed to the concern that the rule of law would be introduced in Uzbekistan in line with international standards. One example of this was the training of the judiciary and judicial professions, as well as the governance of the judiciary.
Most importantly, coming four years after the closure of the Criminal Reform Support Project, with mixed results, in which JCI participated under German cooperation leadership, the visit was an opportunity for various interviews to take a look at the potential of future judicial cooperation. Thanks to the very effective support of the Embassy’s Cultural Cooperation and Action Service in preparing and accompanying the mission, the delegation was able to meet:
- On the one hand, the heads of the cooperation and political sections of the European Union delegation, whose 2020-2025 programming currently being prepared should include a significant rule of law, and the High Representative of the OSCE for Uzbekistan, whose team is currently working on the question of the independence of the institutions, including the training of judges;
- On the other hand, a number of key players in the justice sector and Uzbek judicial cooperation: Mr Jumanyzov, Head of the International Department of the Ministry of Justice; The International Department of the Prosecutor General; Mr Mirzaev, Assistant to the President of the Supreme Court and his team; Mr Gafurov, Vice-President of the Constitutional Court, and two of his judges; Mr Kolenko, Director of the Academy of Prosecutors, and his deputy; Finally, the newly created Vice-President of the High Judicial Council, in charge of the appointment of judges, and Deputy Director of the Academy for the Training of Judges.
These interviews confirmed that the subjects on which French judicial cooperation could provide useful support are not lacking. Specific and targeted actions could be envisaged in response to needs and requests precisely expressed by some of the interlocutors met, pending further proposals, the formulation and implementation of which will of course depend on multilateral funding, which in due course will have to be carried out.