Alert Day for Independence of Justice in Europe May 23, 2013

RougeMontesquieu had explained just how important separation of powers is for democracy and the guarantee of freedom. How far has Europe come in its observance of this democratic principal as its core value?

The independence of justice, the quintessential principle of democracy, is today threatened in many European countries, both externally and internally, as the result of lack of effective protection of its independence, despite the proclamation of the ruling principle.

MEDEL, the organization of European magistrates, which since its foundation in 1985 has been concerned with the effectiveness of independence of justice, could not remain silent in the face of such an alarming observation and used the commemoration of the assassination of Judge Falcone as an opportunity to initiate this unprecedented event.

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Audit on Serbian judiciary

Audit Serbie conferenceThe audit on Serbian judiciary was issued June 29th 2012 in Belgrade.

The judiciary system established as a result of the reforms implemented since 2009 with the brutal dismissal of a significant number of judges and prosecutors does not under any circumstances respond to the requests of an independent, impartial judiciary that serves its citizens.

Thus the fact arises that the judiciary reform process needs to be revised and re-implemented in line with different modalities, with the priority request being to resolve the issues of judges and prosecutors which have been "relieved of their judicial functions" without respect for the most fundamental principles. A need also arises for a comprehensive programme of continuous education for judges and prosecutors facing wide scale changes at the level of the whole Serbian judiciary.

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Support to Baltasar Garzón

Baltasar GarzónOpen letter to Spanish judiciary authorities

As jurists, lawyers, judges, academics and human rights defenders of different nationalities signing below, we are writing to you in order to express our perplexity regarding the decision on 3 February 2010 of the Investigative Judge of the Second Chamber of the Supreme Court in the special case Nº: 20048/2009.

The judge decided to continue the judicial investigation against Justice Baltasar Garzón, allegedly responsible of the offence of judicial prevarication.

The criminal complaint was filed against Justice Garzón for trying to fulfill the obligation of the Spanish State to investigate crimes against humanity committed during Franco’s dictatorship, in particular enforced disappearances. He is allegedly responsible of disregarding the 1977 Amnesty Law, of violating the principle of non retroactivity of criminal law and the principle of legality and prescription of criminal action.

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Strengthen the Judiciary's Independence in Europe!

Strengthen the Judiciary's Independence in EuropeConference "Judicial independance in Europe, models of self government and self responsability" 

Frankfurt am Main, 7 - 8th november 2008.

The conference program

Papers :

Following European trends, challenges and choices (Eric Alt) : There is no unique model, but choices need to be made to develop mutual confidence and efficiency. We have to invent new scales of justice, so that a German judge or prosecutor asking his French or Italian counterpart for some investigations can be sure that the work is done fairly and in good time. This depends on a whole system, but the guarantees of independence are an important part of this system.

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Round Table on Draft Judiciary Laws in Serbia

Palais justice BelgradeIn order to eliminate the major unconstitutionalities and encourage the indispensable public debate on the set of draft judiciary laws, the Judges' Association of Serbia held a round table entitled "Judiciary Laws" on 8 November 2008, which was attended by eminent experts - law college professors and judges and representatives of international organisations and associations. After analysing the degree in which the draft laws are harmonised with the Constitution of the Republic of Serbia and international standards, the participants adopted the following conclusions:

1. The transitional and final provisions of the Act on Judges and Act on the High Judicial Council allow for the politicisation of the judiciary and impermissible political influence by prescribing the so-called general re-election of judges, in contravention of the explicit constitutional provisions, and by establishing procedures varying from those envisaged by the main provisions of those very laws - procedures related to the nomination of the members of the first High Judicial Council from amongst the ranks of judges and the determination of the necessary number of judges by the first High Judicial Council (with the prior consent of the Minister of Justice).

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Challenges of transition to Democracy

Vieira Da SilvaConclusions of the International Conference "Independence of Judiciary and challenges of transitions"

Judges' Association of Serbia along with the Prosecutors' Association of Serbia was the hosts of an International Conference “Independence of Judiciary and Challenges of the Transitions”, held on Saturday, June 2, 2007 in the Palace of Justice in Belgrade.

The Conference was attended by over 120 participants, representatives of the professional associations of judges and prosecutors from Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Montenegro, Slovenia, Republic of Srpska, Macedonia, Romania and Bulgaria, as well as from Greece, Italy, Cyprus, Germany, Poland, Portugal, France, Czech Republic and Spain, whose judges' and prosecutors' associations are members of MEDEL (European association of judges and prosecutors). Council of Europe experts also took part in the Conference.

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Judges and prosecutors liablility


MEDELMedel dedicated two meetings to this theme: a seminar in Prague (June 2006), and a round table during the conference of Belgrade (June 2007)

French report (Eric Alt)
Italian report (Alessandro Sutera Sardo)
Austrian report

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A european statute for magistracy

ItalyOn January 16th 1993, in Palermo, Italy, the associated magistrates of Medel have adopted the «Elements of a European Statute of Magistracy.

This text expresses the conviction that a democratic, independent and transparent judiciary constitutes an essential element of the Rule of Law: The Palermo Declaration: Elements of a European Statute of Magistracy.

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Statements of Medel

MEDELFreedom of speach (march 2008), about the situation in Spain.

Nominations in international courts

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