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AKIPRESS.COM - An OSCE-supported annual two-day roundtable discussion on major areas of criminal justice modernization began today at Ak-Bulak near Almaty, Kazakhstan, reports the OSCE.
The event brought together some 70 high-level governmental officials, parliamentarians, representatives of non-governmental organizations, academia and the Bar Association as well as national and international legal experts from Germany and the Netherlands. The event was also attended by the delegation of the Supreme Constitutional Court of Egypt.
Participants discussed existing gaps in current law enforcement practice and key challenges related to the implementation of novelties introduced by recent criminal justice reform. They reviewed a wide of range issues pertaining to plea bargaining and confession of guilt, pre-trial detention and investigation. They also discussed the principle of the presumption of innocence, equality and the adversarial system in criminal trials. A separate session was devoted to the registration of criminal offenses in the economic realm and methods of their investigation.
Igor Rogov, the Chairperson of the Constitutional Council of Kazakhstan said: “A certain amount of experience has been gained since the adoption of the new criminal justice codes in 2015. This gives us the opportunity to draw some conclusions about their effectiveness and how they are applied in practice.”
“The application of novelties in criminal procedure will always generate an active discussion, both in the legal community and among ordinary citizens,” said Ambassador György Szabó, Head of the OSCE Programme Office in Astana. “I hope that today's meeting with the involvement of all key stakeholders will contribute to further improving law enforcement practice based on the positive international experience.”
The event was co-organized by the OSCE Programme Office in Astana in co-operation with the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Constitutional Council, the Supreme Court of Kazakhstan and the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) with the support of the German Foundation for International Legal Co-operation.
The event is part of the Programme office’s support to the authorities and civil society efforts to strengthen the rule of law and criminal justice institutions in the host country.