Representatives of Justice International (JI), Lawyers for Lawyers (L4L) and international legal expert Liudmila Ulyashyna of Human Rights House Foundation (HRHF) traveled to Kyrgyzstan to conduct an assessment mission on existing legal professional rights, protections and immunities of local lawyers and advocates. The project, entitled "Identifying Legal Barriers to Effective Legal Representation: Survey of Kyrgyz Advocates and Lawyers," seeks to also document the instances of pressure and intimidation experienced by lawyers in Kyrgyzstan as well as identify the reasons behind the failures to protect lawyers. The information collected is being used to develop a road map for best practices to address the infringement of lawyers’ rights.
During the visit to Kyrgyzstan, the assessment team met with and interviewed a variety of lawyers and human rights defenders (HRDs), members of the civil society, representatives from local and international NGOs, the local Bar Association, the Advokatura, and many other relevant parties. The team conducted a confidential survey that was organized into seven categories: access to the legal profession; right to independent practice; professional immunity; disciplinary proceedings; access to clients; confidential communications with clients; and right to information. These categories are based on established international norms protecting professional rights and immunities of lawyers.
The team also conducted several events on raising public awareness of the importance of protecting the rights of lawyers. The summary of the report could be found here, and the final report can be found here.