detail - Rule of Law Programme Middle East and North Africa
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The central mission of judicial training institutes is to assure the professional, independent, and unbiased training of the magistrates during the initial training programs. These institutes also play a significant role in the performance development of the judges and prosecutors in-service by providing continuous education and training programs. To preserve and strengthen the public confidence in the judiciary according to the rule of law it is vital to ensure a well-educated and informed judiciary that adheres to the highest standards of conduct.
Considering the topic’s significance, the second conference on “Judicial Training in the MENA Region - Fundamental Principles and Practical Training for Judges - Regional and International Perspectives” was aiming to exchange expertise between judicial institutes from the MENA region and their peers from Europe. The exchange set the ground to develop a joint judicial culture based on mutual trust between training institutes in order to debate significant aspects of judicial education. It also served as a platform to discuss modern methods in training judges and to benefit from the best practices.
With the participation of 10 Arab and European countries and a representative of the Arab Center for Legal and Judicial Research from the Arab League, the two-day conference gathered directors of judicial training institutes, judges and legal experts to debate five main components adopted as basis for discussions addressed from a comparative perspective:
1. Fundamental Principles and Training Practices
2. Curricula and Methods
3. Formats of Practical Training
4. Mentoring, Continuous Training and Exchange
5. Institutional Aspects and Challenges
The conference was launched with a welcome note presented by Justice Youssef Jassem Al Moutawaa’ President of the Supreme Judicial Council of Kuwait, emphasizing the importance of the conference in developing the technical capacities of experts in charge of judicial training.
The debates focused on the necessity of identifying training needs and the importance of practical, rather than academically, based training. It was recognized by the participants that despite the diversity and specificity of practices in different cultures, the principles of judicial training are consolidated. It was underlined that the language used in drafting judicial decisions is of main importance and must not be surpassed. Furthermore, the importance of modern training for judges and instructions on how to manage biases leads to preserve the independence of the judiciary.
The workshop lead to a list of recommendations, which will be used as a basis for future collaborations to endorse and sustain the public confidence in the judiciary and its independence.