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HomeSéparateurFocusSéparateurEuropeSéparateurFranceSéparateur10th Anniversary of the CEPEJ
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10th Anniversary of the CEPEJ

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The UIHJ attended on 6 and 7 December 2012 the 10th Anniversary of the CEPEJ at the Council of Europe during its 20th Plenary Meeting

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John Stacey, President of the CEPEJ, Leo Netten, President of the UIHJ
 
Trusting Relationships with Justice Professionals
 
The UIHJ was represented by its President, Leo Netten, and its First Secretary, Mathieu Chardon.
The UIHJ is a Permanent Observer Member of the European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ) of the Council of Europe. The CEPEJ was created on 10 September 2002 by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. It aims to improve the efficiency and functioning of justice in its 47 member states and the development of the implementation of the instruments adopted by the Council of Europe to this end.
Five years ago, the UIHJ already attended the 5th anniversary of the CEPEJ, which took place at the European Court of Human Rights.
To celebrate this tenth anniversary, distinguished personalities were invited. In her short speech, Gabrielle Battani-Dragoni, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe, considered that it is not enough to have judged independently to judge well. It is also necessary that the judicial system, the courts, civil, administrative and criminal procedures actually work and produce the results expected by the society: render justice and therefore create social ties. Welcoming the actions of the CEPEJ, Ms Battani-Dragoni found that the CEPEJ has become a key player in the debate on the functioning of justice in Europe, in search of a balance between fundamental principles of one hand, the efficiency and quality of the systems on the other hand. She also stressed that the CEPEJ established relations of trust with justice professionals from Morocco, Tunisia and Jordan. The Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe also insisted that the CEPEJ is a concrete element for a close cooperation between the Council of Europe and the European Union, in particular to strengthen through common principles the mutual trust of judicial systems. Finally, on behalf of the Council of Europe, she mentioned the full support to the CEPEJ for the future to allow the Council of Europe to fulfil its mission to protect human rights, to strengthen the rule of law and build a more humane Europe for 800 million Europeans.

The Appropriate Instruments of the CEPEJ
 
Three guests took the floor after Ms Battani-Dragoni to wish a happy tenth anniversary CEPEJ: Ambassador Josep Dalleres, Chairperson of the Deputies of the Council of Europe, Dean Spielman, President the European Court of Human Rights and Nils Muiznieks Commissioner for Human Rights.
John Stacey, President of the CEPEJ, closed the opening ceremony by thanking the speakers for their kind words and strong support. Mr Stacey said that the success of the CEPEJ is the result of “joint work, and of many regular exchanges, between informed people from all over Europe, members and experts guided by high quality chairpersons of working groups, with the general support and encouragement of the bureau members and not forgetting the backing of a committed secretariat”. The President of the CEPEJ welcomed his two predecessors, Eberhard Desch, who was present, the "pioneer with innovative ideas" and the late Fausto de Santis. John Stacey hoped that countries, governments and justice professionals take ownership of the CEPEJ's tools. He also noted the importance of political and financial support of the countries so that this great organization may continue its activities for the next ten years.
A round table was organized on the theme of "A Long Walk to the efficiency and quality of justice." The roundtable was chaired by André Potocki, former Vice President of the CEPEJ and currently judge at the European Court of Human Rights. Eberhard Desch, president of the CDCJ, Paul Maffei, Vice President of the CCJE, Joao Manuel Da Sivla Miguel, President of the CCPE and Georg Stawa, Vice-President of the CEPEJ participated in this roundtable.
Legal professionals were invited to take part in a workshop on the theme "Ten years of practical tools aimed at policy makers and justice professionals." Bettina Coen, judge at the Court of Freiburg (Germany), Jean-Jacques Kuster (European Union of Rechtspfleger and Court clerks), Carmen Dantis, Prosecutor at the Court of Vrancea (Romania) and Mathieu Chardon, 1st secretary of the UIHJ participated in this workshop. Our colleague presented the CEPEJ guidelines for a better implementation of the existing recommendations of the Council of Europe on enforcement and indicated how this tool was essential to the work of judicial officers.

President Stacey Unanimously Re-elected
 
During the 20th plenary meeting, the next cycle of evaluation of European judicial systems has been decided. The CEPEJ has confirmed its willingness to further cooperate with the bodies of the European Union to evaluate the functioning of judicial systems, according to modalities to be clearly defined to ensure the proper implementation of the CEPEJ's principles and methodology.
It particularly welcomed the on-going joint programmes with the European Union carried out by the CEPEJ, for evaluating and supporting the reform of the judicial systems in Morocco and Tunisia, and possibly soon in Jordan, on the basis of the CEPEJ tools and methodology.
It has to be mentioned that the UIHJ participated in November 2012 in a mission in Morocco as part of the programme with Morocco. Moreover, representatives of the Ministry of Justice and Presidents of Moroccans courts were in attendance of the 20th plenary meeting: Najia Rahali, Director of Studies, cooperation and modernization of the Ministry of Justice of Morocco, Abdallah Boujida President of the Court of First Instance of Casablanca, Abdelaziz Isserssif, President of the Court of First Instance of Sidi Kacem and Abdelmati El Kaddouri, President of the Administrative Court of Agadir.
Finally, the UIHJ congratulates John Stacey, who was unanimously re-elected as President of the CEPEJ during this 20th plenary meeting. President Netten said the full support of the UIHJ to the CEPEJ and offered once again the expertise of the judicial officers of the 73 member countries of the UIHJ.


Presentation of the UIHJ during the 10th anniversary of the CEPEJ - 6 December 2012 - Strasbourg


The Guidelines of the CEPEJ for a better implementation of the existing recommendations of the council of Europe on enforcement: a working tool essential for the judicial officers


Mathieu Chardon, judicial officer (France), First Secretary of the International Union of Judicial Officers (UIHJ)


Mr Chair,
Ladies and gentlemen,

I would like to share the pleasure which is that of the International Union of Judicial officers to have been invited to take part in the ceremony to mark the 10th anniversary of the CEPEJ. This is a great mark of respect and gratitude to our organization and to the profession of judicial officer not only in Europe but also in other parts of the world. Mr Chair, we are honoured.

May I take this opportunity to tell you how much we appreciate the great work done by the CEPEJ during the past decade. I greet the three successive presidents of the CEPEJ: Eberhard Desch, the pioneer, who led the CEPEJ to the path of development, the late Fausto de Santis, who, during his presidency, initiated the CEPEJ guidelines on enforcement and John Stacey, with whom we were able to continue our actions and strengthen the now unwavering links between our two organizations.

In our capacity of permanent observer member, we participate in all plenary meetings. We had the opportunity to participate on several occasions in the work of the CEPEJ. Each time, we were impressed by the quality of meetings, work reports, but also by the spirit of cooperation and openness shared by the representatives of the 47 member states and that of observer members.

There is indeed a specific atmosphere within your Commission. An atmosphere of discussion, dialogue, carefulness, of serenity that can only exist in an assembly focused on a single purpose: to promote the efficiency of justice. It must be said that the 47 member states are assisted by an infallible secretariat that primarily applies to itself the principles of the CEPEJ: the efficiency.

The CEPEJ is the illustration that people can work in harmony on an everyday basis.
Since its inception, it has demonstrated its willingness of openness when it sake the cooperation of legal professions: judges, clerks, judicial officers, lawyers, notaries. This collaboration was valuable for everyone. For the International Union of Judicial officers, it acted as a real catalyst.
The International Union celebrated its 60th anniversary a few days ago in Madrid. Our organization currently has 73 members, including 35 in Europe.
The UIHJ is a member of the Economic and Social Council of the United Nations. It is an observer member of UNCITRAL, a permanent observer member of the CEPEJ, an observer member of the Hague Conference on Private International Law, a founding member of the European Law Institute, an observer member of the Economic and Monetary Union of West Africa.

The International Union aims to represent its members and international organizations to ensure collaboration with national professional bodies. It provides for the improvement of national procedural law and international treaties. It strives to promote ideas, projects and initiatives to progress and rise of the independent status of the judicial officer.

The UIHJ can be described as very active since our agenda for the last twelve months included no fewer than 109 events including many workshops and seminars that we organized. President Stacey honoured us several times with his presence during our seminars, the most important being the 21st International Congress of judicial officers held in Cape Town in early May 2012. I will come back to this in a moment.

Over the last fifteen years, the Council of Europe and the European Court of Human Rights equally shared four major events for the judicial officers.
In the Hornsby against Greece case of 19 March 1997, the European Court of Human Rights has raised the right to enforcement to the same level as the right to a fair trial under Article 6.1 of the European Convention of Human Rights of 4 November 1950. What recognition for our profession!

The same court, in the Pini and others against Romania case of 22 June 2004, acknowledged that judicial officers work in the interest of the good administration of justice, which makes them an essential element of the rule of law. What recognition for our profession!

On 9 September 2003, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted Recommendation Rec (20013) 17 on enforcement. This text whose inspiration reflects the work of the UIHJ contains guidelines concerning enforcement but also enforcement agents. What recognition for our profession!

Finally, more recently, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted on 17 December 2009, the CEPEJ guidelines for a better implementation of recommendation 17. I will not risk repeating myself. I WILL repeat myself. What recognition for our profession!

I must say that when President de Santis decided to establish the Working Group to develop these guidelines, he asked the International Union to participate as an observer. We quickly set to work, knowing that the result would be exceptional and was called to be a milestone in the history of the profession of judicial officer and enforcement procedures. There would be a before and an after the guidelines on enforcement.

Throughout its 82 items and a glossary - which is a first - the guidelines are a living document, a roadmap for anyone who wants to commit his country on the path of reforms needed to improve the efficiency of its judicial system.

I mentioned a few minutes ago the Congress of the UIHJ in Cape Town. Its theme was “The Judicial Officer of the 21st Century”. This judicial officer is precisely that of the CEPEJ guidelines. It is around the guidelines that we have articulated our work. The participation of the UIHJ in the development of the guidelines allowed us to be fully in phase with the result.

The CEPEJ guidelines are also those of the UIHJ. Can there be a better example of a perfect collaboration between our two institutions? The guidelines are a model. The guidelines are THE model.

I would like to carry on and give you two other concrete examples of the impact of this fundamental text. The first example concerns the Grand questionnaire of the UIHJ that was presented during a previous plenary meeting. The UIHJ has prepared 350 questions that were sent to all members of the UIHJ. To date more than 50 countries responded and the results are available on the Internet.

In the light of the CEPEJ reports on the efficiency of judicial systems, we decided to publish a report that will examine the efficiency of the profession of judicial officer and civil enforcement procedures, mainly based on the information contained in our Grand questionnaire. And we have taken as a structure to present our work that of the guidelines.

A final - maybe striking - example. In the South Programme funded by the European Union and implemented by the Council of Europe, the CEPEJ has visited Morocco in June 2012. The service of documents was described as problematic by all players of the Moroccan judiciary. The expertise of the UIHJ was requested by the CEPEJ in a second mission early November 2012. The mission visited several representatives of the Judiciary including the National Order of Moroccan judicial officers, which represents the profession at national and is a member of our organization.

The first vice-president of the organization, responsible for international affairs, was ecstatic about the CEPEJ guidelines. Here are his remarks before the representatives of the CEPEJ.
"This is a model for us. This document is extraordinary. It has everything and it is truly universal. It can be implemented in Europe but it can also be implemented in Morocco and around the world". Do you see the document on the screen? This is actually the CEPEJ guidelines translated into Arabic by the National Order of Judicial Officers of Morocco. What more can be said?

You may know about this. We regularly publish the scientific review of the UIHJ: Juris-Union. In February 2011, issue number 5 of Juris-Union concerned the guidelines with the title: "The CEPEJ Guidelines on enforcement: a model for the world?" For sure the question mark was not necessary.

The UIHJ looks forward to continuing its collaboration with the CEPEJ, thank you for your attention and wish you a great 10th anniversary of this noble institution that, indeed, and without a shadow of a question mark, is also a model for the world.
 
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John Stacey, President of the CEPEJ, Leo Netten, President of the UIHJ
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The round table chaired by André Potocki: From L. to R.: Muriel Decot, Co-Secretary of the CEPEJ, Stéphane Leyenberger, Secretary of the CEPEJ, John Stacey, President of the CEPEJ, Georg Stawa, Vice President of the CEPEJ, André Potocki, Judge at the European Court of Human Rights, former Vice President of the CEPEJ, Eberhard Desch, President of CDCJ, Former President of the CEPEJ, Joao Manuel Da Silva Miguel, President of CCPE, Paul Maffei, Vice-President of CCJE
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The Workshop of the Justice professionals : on the right, Bettina Coen, judge at the Court of Freiburg (Germany), Jean-Jacques Kuster (European Union of Rechtspfleger and Court clerks), Carmen Dantis, Prosecutor at the Court of Vrancea (Romania) and Mathieu Chardon, 1st secretary of the UIHJ
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Leo Netten hands to John Stacey an issue of « Once Upon a Time… the UIHJ” which tells the story of the sixty years of existence of the UIHJ
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The present of Azerbaijan for the 10 years of the CEPEJ
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Souvenir from the 10th Anniversary
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The delegation from Morocco: Najia Rahali, Director of Studies, cooperation and modernization of the Ministry of Justice of Morocco, Abdallah Boujida President of the Court of First Instance of Casablanca, Abdelaziz Isserssif, President of the Court of First Instance of Sidi Kacem, Abdelmati El Kaddouri, President of the Administrative Court of Agadir
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Presentation of the actions of the CEPEJ in 2013 for Morocco
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