Today the ICJ released its final report on Afghanistan’s Legal System and its Compatibility with International Human Rights Standards.
The report examines the Afghan legal system established under and since the 1964 Constitution against the benchmark of international human rights standards.
In its report, the ICJ urges the Government of Afghanistan to prioritise the establishment of stable legal structures able and willing to enforce the rule of law. It also calls upon all governments involved in the reconstruction of the country to recognise the importance of a functioning legal system as a pre-requisite for Afghanistan’s future. Governments are advised to honour their existing commitments both political and practical, to assist and encourage the legal reform process.
The report highlights the dearth of available written law and legal professionals in Afghanistan and the current confinement of state law to Kabul and its immediate surroundings.
The report recommends significant legal reform in light of the essential requirements of international human rights standards, judicial training and the gradual expansion of legal structures to rural areas and other cities. The ICJ also premises any such legal reform on the inclusion of women and other vulnerable groups in the process. The report notes the need to take into account the realities of existing customary practices.
The ICJ’s report covers all aspects of existing law relating to the judiciary, the Office of the Public Prosecutor, legal professionals, substantive and procedural laws, criminal law, procedural laws, juvenile justice and the legal status of women.