Euromed Justice III prepares work on handbook on access to justice and legal aid

The first meeting has taken place under the Euromed Justice III project to start work on a handbook that will identify and describe possible approaches and best practices to improve access to justice and legal aid.
Representatives from Israel, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco and Tunisia, together with experts from France and Austria, took part in the first meeting of Working Group I on the component “Access to Justice and Legal Aid”, which is in charge of preparing the handbook.
During the meeting, held on 17, 18 and 19 April 2012 in Paris, the background, context and structure of the working group meetings to be developed under this component, including their overall approach and the main topics suggested for discussion, were introduced by the Project team experts. The project website and the different tools offered in order to support the intermediate work of the participants/experts/project team in between the different meetings of the working group were also presented.
Two presentations were also made during the meeting, the first on “Legal Aid: international approach and the French experience”, was made by French Ministry of Justice Expert; and the second one on “General presentation on Access to Justice and Legal Aid, more specifically for underprivileged social groups”, was delivered by a UN Drug Control and Crime Prevention Officer.
Representatives of the Mediterranean countries made presentations on the current situation in this field in their respective countries. These presentations were followed by an open debate.
With regards to the handbook, and considering that the work will be developed during 5 working group meetings, the last one being in April 2013, the participants agreed to continue, if necessary, the discussion on this topic during the next meeting through the virtual platform on the project website. In addition, and for the next meeting, the working group will focus - as main topics for discussion - on the length of the procedures, delays and timeframe for judicial proceedings.
Euromed Justice III, funded by the EU with a budget of €5 million over the period 2011-2014, aims to support the development of the Mediterranean partners' institutional and administrative capacity and good governance in the field of justice, including the modernisation of justice systems, the simplification of judicial proceedings and improved access to justice.  (ENPI Info Centre)
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Press release
Euromed Justice III – fiche and news
Euromed Justice III - website


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