The Legal Policy Research Center (LPRC) and the Bar Human Rights Committee of England and Wales (BHRC) with support from the British Embassy in Kazakhstan organized trainings for Kazakhstani lawyers as part of the project “International Human Rights Law and Best Practice for Lawyers in Kazakhstan: How to Use International Legal Standards and Effective Implementation of International and Regional Frameworks in Response to Challenges of COWID-19”.

The first training entitled “Retreat from Human Rights in a Pandemic.  The Right to a Fair Trial / Applying Fair Trial Standards in Light of COVID-19. What has changed in practice?” was held on February 9, 2021.

The British speakers were Grainne Mellon, a public law expert specializing in human rights, civil liberties and equality, and Jonathan Cooper, an Officer of the Order of the British Empire, a human rights specialist with experience of working before British and international courts and tribunals, leading training programs and advising on human rights worldwide.

In her introduction, Grainne Mellon introduced the concept of derogation from human rights, gave an example of the rights that can be derogated from, and the basic principles of derogation from human rights standards. The role of the courts in verifying the legality of derogation was noted.    

The expert analyzed the international treaties guaranteeing the right to a fair trial. The main elements of a fair trial were highlighted.

Speaker Jonathan Cooper went on to answer questions such as the meaning of a criminal charge, what is an impartial court and reasonable time for a trial. Real cases from the European Court of Human Rights were presented. The expert stressed the importance of observing the right to a fair trial.

A recording of the first part of the training can be seen here

The presentation on the first part of the training is available at the following link: 

In the second part of the training Inara Masanova continued. Inara is a lawyer of the Almaty Regional Bar Association, a human rights defender specializing in the protection of human rights.

Inara told about the work of the courts during the pandemic, about the refusals to accept and consider complaints in connection with the introduction of quarantine measures and the state of emergency in Almaty, as well as the transfer of court proceedings to an online format. The speaker also noted what tools a lawyer has to minimize violations in the online format, for example, the requirement for the judiciary to conduct the process through an application, which can connect all comers.   

The expert shared a current attorney’s observation of online case management. Both the pros and cons of considering cases online were brought into discussion, with evidence in the form of cases from the speaker’s personal jurisprudence. 

In conclusion, Inara gave some tips on secret rules of behavior in the online processes, including the indication of the full name and procedural status when entering the online conference, switching off the microphone and sound in ZOOM, etc.

You can watch the recording of the second part of the training here

A presentation on the second part of the training is available at the following link:

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