AIJA Endorses Council of Europe Initiative to Protect the Profession of Lawyers

APRIL 23, 2024

The International Association of Young Lawyers (AIJA) has been asked to give feedback on the Council of Europe's draft Convention for the Protection of the Profession of Lawyer. This significant initiative aims to establish a robust framework that will enhance the protection of lawyers across the Council's member countries. Those 46 Member States correspond to a significant amount of members of our association. The country members include EU Member States as well as 19 other countries on the European Continent. See here

Upon recommendation of the Human Rights Committee, AIJA has officially responded to the Council of Europe's solicitation for feedback on the draft convention. The response highlighted AIJA's appreciation for the Council's efforts to foster a safer and more secure environment for lawyers practicing in Europe.

The draft convention is seen as a vital step forward in safeguarding young lawyers from undue state intervention, enabling them to practice their profession freely. AIJA believes that the proposed framework not only meets but potentially sets a new standard for the protection of legal practitioners.

However, AIJA has suggested an important amendment to ensure that the convention stipulates these measures as the minimum level of protection. This clarification aims to prevent any reduction in the stronger protections currently available in some jurisdictions, such as legal privilege.

AIJA remains committed to supporting the Council of Europe in this endeavour and will continue to participate actively in the ongoing development of the convention. The association encourages its members to stay engaged with this process, reflecting its core commitment to upholding and enhancing the rights of lawyers internationally.

For more details and to follow updates on this initiative, members are encouraged to visit AIJA's official website or contact their local AIJA representative. You can find the draft proposal of convention here.