- Published: May 20, 2016
Team Leader: Dr Ingo Risch, Tom Patterson
Responsible at the IRZ: Nathalie Herbeck, Anastasia Schmieder
Between October 2011 and August 2015, the IRZimplemented the EU-funded project in Uzbekistan entitled "Support to Criminal Judicial Reforms" as the lead contractor. The project had a budget of roughly Euro 9.7 million. The junior partners were GIZ, JCI (France), as well as NI-CO (United Kingdom). The large IT component, put on hold because of an unexpected change of experts for which the consortium was not responsible, was extended for a further year to August 2015 at the request of the EU delegation in Tashkent and of the beneficiaries, and has now been brought to a successful conclusion in cooperation with GIZ.
In the last year of the project, amongst other activities a distance learning system was implemented within the IT component for the main beneficiaries, namely the Uzbek Ministry of Justice, the office of the General Prosecutor's Office and the Ministry of the Interior. It is a welcome development that the evaluation of the project by the European Commission towards the end of the project revealed that the Uzbek partners expressed their satisfaction with regard to the objectives that had been reached.
The beneficiary institutions of the consulting project, which was highly complex and tasked with capacity building, were the Ministry of Justice, the Ministry of the Interior (Police and Prisons), the General Prosecutor's Office , as well as the Research Centre for Liberalisation and Democratisation at the Supreme Court. Each of these four institutions was supported with advice within its own tailored component.
All the components were provided with cross-cutting training and PR components.
Results were achieved in the individual components which complied with the Financing Agreement which the European Commission and the Uzbek Government had concluded for the implementation of the project. The following was also implemented, amongst other things, during the term of the project:
Research Centre for Liberalisation and Democratisation at the Supreme Court
- Legal analyses and comparisons on topics related to criminal procedure, e.g. consideration and taking of evidence
- Consultation on the role of counsel in criminal proceedings: rights of the accused and of defence counsel
- Analysis and recommendations on improving the sanctions system: alternative sanctions
- Overview of practical cases in EU Member States on Habeas Corpus issues
- Conceptualisation and further development of training curricula for judges
- Implementation of workshops on relevant topics: techniques for writing rulings, international standards in criminal proceedings, the fight against corruption in the judiciary, the role of preliminary proceedings and witness protection
General Prosecutor's Office
- Consultation on Habeas Corpus and anti-corruption issues
- Consultation on the fight against terrorism and the funding of terrorism
- Consultation on international mutual assistance in criminal matters and on extradition proceedings
- Conclusion of a memorandum between the Bar and the General Prosecutor's Office
- Establishment of a performance management system for the General Prosecutor's Office
Ministry of Justice
- Legislation consultation, amongst other things on the following laws: Anti-Corruption Law, Code of Criminal Procedure (the "deal" in criminal proceedings, Habeas Corpus)
- Advice on alternative criminal sentencing
- Support for the training facility of the Ministry of Justice
- Establishment of an electronic legal library and an extensive manual on legal formalities
Ministry of the Interior (Police and Prisons):
- Highlighting the relevance of human rights in the day-to-day work of the police and in prisons
- Consultation on dealing with female and juvenile offenders
- Drafting a plan for the establishment of a department for human rights in the Ministry of the Interior
- Regional training courses for officials of the Ministry of the Interior on conflict management, human rights and psychological support for police officers
We remain hopeful that the initiatives which have been launched by the project can be implemented in order to guarantee that the remaining reforms that are needed in the Uzbek criminal law system will be sustainably anchored.