Nearly a thousand lawyers in Armenian issued a group statement on Thursday against a legal regulation envisaged by the draft Judicial Code that would allow courts to impose a fine on a lawyer. The 907 lawyers of Armenia’s Chamber of Advocates who signed under the statement demand that the country’s parliament and the government take the necessary measures to remove the corresponding provisions from the draft.
“The current regulation guarantees that lawyers are protected against any possible unreasonable court interference; however, the new approach envisaged by the draft jeopardizes the independence of advocacy (including the professional independence of the advocate as a person carrying out human rights activities) and the freedom guaranteed by the Armenian Constitution and international legal acts. The draft presents no justified argument for deciding to give judges the possibility of imposing a fine on a lawyer. Restricting the independence and freedom of a lawyer will lead to serious violations of the right to a fair trial,” the statement reads.