79 Students Graduate from Legal Clinic Programme

On Saturday, 79 senior students, including 33 women, graduated from a four-month legal clinic programme. Badakhshan University’s Law and Sharia Faculties conducted the programme in close coordination. The Deputy Governor of Badakhshan, heads of justice institutions, and state partners, including the Department of Women’s Affairs (DoWA), attended the event. The Afghan-German Cooperation’s Rule of Law project has been supporting the legal clinic programme at Badakhshan University since 2015. Through the legal clinics, students familiarise themselves with the duties and responsibilities of a career in legal and judicial institutions. The skills they learn will prepare them for their work as judges, prosecutors and lawyers.

Mr Fazul Rahman Fazli, head of Badakhshan’s appellate court, said, ‘The moot court on a criminal case played by students was a positive experience. The students are qualified, and the moot court was played like real judicial sessions in court by professional judges.’

This round of legal clinics started on 10th August 2019 and focused on familiarising senior students with the procedures of legal and judicial institutions as with all previous clinics. As part of the programme, students attend legal training on top of their normal university classes, have the opportunity to gain practical experience at legal clinics and deal with real law cases. Some students find employment directly after their practical work, at the court or prosecution office for example.

Ms Wahida Harir, one of the legal clinic graduates, said, ‘The legal clinic programme was very useful for the students as our theoretical lessons were transferred to practice. By playing the roles of judges and prosecutors we can learn about their roles in a fair trial.’

At the graduation ceremony, the students took part in a moot court, where they assumed the roles of the parties in a court proceeding. By acting the roles of prosecutor, defence lawyer, judges and police in a criminal case, students put their legal knowledge and skills gained from the programme to the test. Some of the students and guests participated as the audience in the moot court.

Already in the fifth and final round of legal clinics, the programme has benefitted 410 students and helps strengthen judicial institutions in the long run.

The programme Promotion of the Rule of Law in Afghanistan (RoL) is implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH on behalf of the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ). The programme aims at ensuring the rule of law, a well-functioning judicial system, and legal security in Afghanistan. To ensure legal security for all citizens, RoL has been supporting so-called Huquq bureaus, which have handled more than 80,000 civil cases since 2013. At the same time, to support higher legal education, RoL provided more than 31,500 books to law and sharia faculties, organised more than 190 courses on legal topics for students and lecturers, and awarded more than 60 students with scholarships. The programme also emphasises promoting women’s rights and strengthening their access to justice as well as the job market.