Second edition of the International Oratory Competition – Berlin, 13-14 September 2019

I have the pleasure to inform you that the FBE is starting the second edition of its International Oratory Competition, for lawyers and law students of less than 35 years of age. This year’s competition follows two very successful International Contract Competitions which gathered respectively 10 and 8 teams from the Member Bars of the FBE in Warsaw and International Oratory Competition for Lawyers under 40 held in Madrid in October 2017 as well as first edition of the International Oratory Human Rights Competition held In Poznań in 2018.

The competition will contribute to pursue the objectives of the FBE by promoting the mobility of lawyers/law students, ensuring the level of professional quality and technical competence of lawyers/law students, strengthen relations between Member Bars and between lawyers/law students from different countries.

The event will be run by the FBE Human Rights Commission and hosted by the Berlin Bar Association, as President of the Commission. It will take place on September 13-14, 2019.

This year’s topic is: “FREEDOM OF SPEECH”

The competition is a great opportunity for lawyers/law students to practice oratory skills, learn to present a case to an international audience of lawyers, develop oral English abilities, and it provides a valuable networking occasion for lawyers from different jurisdictions.

We would like to invite Member Bars of the FBE to send their participants to Berlin to join this competition. The language of the contest is English.

Declaration of participation may be submitted by the Member Bars by e-mail on the attached application form by the August 20th, 2019 (mail: fbehrccompetition@wp.pl)

Please find attached to this letter the information pack with all the details regarding the FBE International Human Rights Oratory Competition, Berlin 2019.

We warmly invite the Member Bars to encourage lawyers to take part in this event and support them. We hope that all participants will find the contest very attractive and beneficial.

Sincerely,

 

Silvia Gimenez Salinas

President of the European Bars Federation

Silvia Giménez-Salinas asume la presidencia de la Federación Europea de Colegios de Abogados (FBE)

Silvia Giménez-Salinas, decana del Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona (ICAB) entre los años 2005 a 2009 y quién hasta ahora ejercía el cargo de vicepresidenta primera de la FBE, ha sido nombrada presidenta de la Fédération des barreaux d’Europe – FBE durante la Asamblea General celebrada el pasado sábado 1 de junio en Barcelona con motivo del 53º Congreso General de la FBE.

La nueva presidenta de los abogados europeos cuenta con una dilatada trayectoria profesional presidiendo diferentes instituciones y organismos como: el Consell de l’Advocacia Catalana, las Comisiones de relaciones con la Administración de Justicia del Consejo General de la Abogacía Española, la Asociación Intercolegial de Cataluña y la Asociación Catalana de Arbitraje del ICAB y del Consejo General de la Abogacía Española, entre otras; y actualmente es miembro del Observatorio de Derecho Civil de Catalunya y presidenta del Instituto de Investigación Aplicada de la Abogacía. Asume ahora la presidencia de la FBE con el objetivo de dotar a la federación de medios prácticos y útiles para sus miembros, centrándose en ayudar y dar soporte a todos aquellos colegios que lo precisen.

Durante la Asamblea General también se nombró  a Dominique Attias (Francia) -vicedecana de París entre los años 2015 a 2017- como primera vicepresidenta de la FBE; Bas Martens (Holanda), segundo vicepresidente y Patrick Dillen (Bélgica) -vicedecano de “l’Ordre néerlandophone des Avocats du Barreau de Bruxelles (NOAB) desde 2015- secretario general.

Durante el discurso de toma de posesión del cargo como nueva presidenta de los abogados europeos, Giménez- Salinas animó a los Colegios de Abogados y Abogadas a involucrarse en la gestión de la federación “para que los colegiados y colegiadas perciban  que la pertenencia a un colegio de la abogacía es un plus en su actividad profesional porque así lo percibe la ciudadanía a la que prestan sus servicios”, dijo. Añadiendo que “el control de calidad de nuestra profesión no solo es a nivel individual, por el buen trabajo realizado por los abogados y abogadas sino también por el valor que la pertenencia a su colegio le otorga la propia sociedad.”

Giménez-Salinas releva al presidente Michele Lucherini (Ordine degli Avvocati di Lucca) que durante este año ha ocupado la presidencia de la Institución. Lucherini, durante su discurso como presidente saliente, agradeció el trabajo realizado a todos los presidentes de la FBE que le han precedido y ha deseado lo mejor a la nueva presidenta de la FBE, Silvia Giménez-Salinas, así como a Dominique Attias, Monique Stengel, Bas Martens y Patrick Dillen.

También, agradeció al Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona el haber acogido el 53º congreso anual de esta organización, y muy especialmente a la decana de dicha Corporación, Mª Eugènia Gay, y a la presidenta de la Comisión de Relaciones Internacionales del ICAB, Rosa Peña, por su implicación en este proyecto.

53º Congreso General de la FBE en Barcelona

“La separación de poderes, un aspecto fundamental en un Estado de Derecho”. Bajo esta reflexión, del 30 al 1 de junio de 2019 se celebró en Barcelona el 53º Congreso de la Federación Europea de Colegios de Abogados (FBE / Fédération des Barreaux d’Europe).

Más de 120 personas se congregaron en Barcelona la pasada semana para abordar una cuestión que es clave para nuestras democracias actuales: La Separación de poderes, un aspecto fundamental en un Estado de Derecho.

Sin embargo, la intención no era entrar en la polémica actual sobre si dicha separación ha sido o no quebrantada, sino reflexionar sobre hasta qué punto el sistema diseñado por Montesquieu sigue siendo válido en una sociedad cuya estructura y composición ha variado de forma significativa.

El Congreso contó con la presencia de más de 20 colegios de abogados europeos -Lecce, Paris, Porto, Ankara, Inglaterra y Gales, Lyon, Frankfurt, entre otros-  y con la participación del presidente de la Federación de Colegios de Abogados de Europa, Michele Lucherini; la decana del Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona, Maria Eugènia Gay; el ex presidente de la FBE, Jean-Pierre Gross; la decana del Colegio de Abogados de Paris, Marie-Aimée Peyron; el presidente de la Comisión de Derechos Humanos del Consejo de Colegios de Abogados de Europa (CCBE), Patrick Henry; la magistrada y presidenta del Tribunal Superior de Justicia de Cataluña entre 2004 y 2010, Maria Eugènia Alegret; y la presidenta de la Abogacía Española, Victoria Ortega, entre otras personalidades de relevancia en el ámbito jurídico.

 

Jueves, 30 de Mayo

El 53º Congreso de la FBE en Barcelona dió comienzo el 30 de mayo con la reunión conjunta de la presidencia, ostentada por Michele Lucherini, y los presidentes de las Comisiones que integran la Federación Europea de Colegios de Abogados -Acceso a la justicia, Arbitraje, Derecho sin fronteras, Igualdad, Ética, Mediación, entre otras- en la Sala de Juntas del Ilustre Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona.

La recepción de bienvenida oficial del Congreso se llevó a cabo en el Palau de Pedralbes y contó con la presencia de la Consellera de Justicia de Catalunya, Ester Capella; el presidente de la Federación de Colegios de Abogados de Europa, Michele Lucherini; la actual presidenta de la FBE y decana emérita del Ilustre Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona, Silvia Giménez-Salinas y la decana del Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona, Maria Eugènia Gay, así como con la participación de todos los asistentes al Congreso que tuvieron la oportunidad de congregarse en los jardines del Palacio de Pedralbes para dar comienzo al 53º Congreso General de la FBE en Barcelona.

 

Viernes, 31 de mayo

El viernes 31 de mayo tuvo lugar el desarrollo del programa científico con la participación de numerosos ponentes de primer nivel nacional y comunitario.

En nombre de los anfitriones, Maria Eugènia Gay, inauguró el 53º Congreso General de la FBE con un discurso en el que destacó la importancia de la separación de poderes en el Estado de Derecho como base de toda fortaleza democrática y la importancia de la Abogacía en esta separación. Seguidamente, intervino Michele Lucherini quién puso de relieve la independencia de los abogados como garantes de la legalidad en la sociedad civil.

La conferencia introductoria, y que daría paso al inicio del programa científico del Congreso, a cargo del Dr. Daniel Innerarity, profesor de Filosofía Política y Social en la Universidad del País Vasco, incidió en los elementos que configuran nuestras actuales democracias y el necesario equilibrio de todos ellos para evitar crisis democráticas.

El programa científico del Congreso se dividió en 4 paneles que contaron con ponentes de primer nivel y analizaron, durante la jornada del viernes, diferentes materias de especial relevancia en relación al tema central del Congreso: “La separación de poderes, un aspecto fundamental del Estado de Derecho”.

El Primer panel de la jornada Separación real en comparación con el equilibrio de poder” analizó durante hora y media la configuración actual de las Constituciones europeas y en qué medida estas se ajustan a la realidad sociopolítica existente.

La Dra. Céline Romainville, profesora de la Universidad Católica de Louvain, fue la ponente principal de esta primera mesa quién hizo especial hincapié en la necesidad de que la división de poderes regulada en las distintas constituciones tiene que adaptarse a los cambios sociales y políticos que ocurren dentro del desarrollo de cada comunidad.

Durante la conferencia intervinieron con diferentes y enriquecedoras aportaciones, centradas en si es realmente posible esta división real de poderes, el decano del Colegio de Abogados de Ankara, Erinç SAĞKAN; el decano de la “Ordre des Barreaux Francophones et Germanophone de Belgique” Jean-Pierre Buyle; el presidente del Consejo de Deontología del Conselho Regional do Porto, Mr. Francisco Vellozo; y moderada por la presidenta de la Abogacía Española, Victoria Ortega.

El segundo panel “El sistema de aforamiento en los diferentes estados” contó con la disertación del Dr. Josep Joan Moreso, Profesor de Filosofía del Derecho en la Universidad Pompeu Fabra, quién centró su ponencia en el análisi del sistema de inmunidad parlamentaria, y con la participación de diferentes ponentes quienes hicieron referencia al sistema de aforamiento en su país de procedencia. Entre ellos, el decano del Colegio de Abogados de Madrid, José María Alonso; el ex presidente de la FBE, Jean- Pierre Gross; Laura Bruno, miembro del consejo de los “Ordine degli Avvocati di Lecce”; y moderada por la decana del Colegio de Abogados de París,  Marie-Aimée Peyron.

“La infuencia de los lobbies: el rol de los colegios de abogados” fue el tema del tercer panel de la segunda jornada del Congreso General de la Federación Europea de Colegios de Abogados en Barcelona.

Un panel introducido por la ponencia del Dr. Rafael Rubio, profesor y director del Grupo de Investigación en Participación y Nuevas Tecnologías (I + DEM) en la Universidad Complutense de Madrid, quién quiso aportar luz sobre el oscurantismo que envuelve a la figura de los lobbies y de qué manera la sociedad puede salir beneficiada de la actividad de estos grupos.

Sobre el papel que juegan los Colegio de Abogados como lobby y cómo pueden influir sobre el legislador conversaron Patrick Henry, presidente de la Comisión de Derechos Humanos del Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE); la presidenta de la Law Society of England and Wales, Christina Blacklaws; la tercera vicepresidenta del “Council of Bars and Law Societies of Europe (CCBE)”, Margarete Gräfin Von Galen.

Un panel moderado por la decana del Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona, Mª Eugènia Gay, quién recordó que el lobbying permite entablar puentes de diálogo que hagan partícipe a la sociedad en los asuntos públicos, fomentando la escucha activa y recíproca entre autoridades y ciudadanía.

El último panel de la tarde abordó la capacidad de los tribunales para crear derecho, examinando las leyes y la adecuación de estas al cambiante sistema social y globalizado.

La Dra. Christina Eckes, profesora de derecho europeo en la Universidad de Amsterdam y directora del Centro de Derecho Europeo y Gobierno de Ámsterdam (ACELG), destacó el papel de los tribunales Europeos como intérpretes de las leyes y examinadores de las mismas.

Un panel extremadamente ameno tanto para los ponentes de la mesa – Farid Hamel, decana del Colegio de Abogados de Lyon; José María Fernández, magistrado en la sección 15 de la Audiencia Provincial de Barcelona; Maria Eugènia Alegret, magistrada y presidenta del Tribunal Superior de Justicia de Cataluña entre 2004 y 2010; Michael Griem, decano del “Frankfurt am Main Bar Association”; y el moderador Manuel Camas, ex decano del Colegio de Abogados de Málaga- como para los asistentes, quienes intervinieron en numerosas ocasiones planteando cuestiones a los ponentes.

Eugenio Gay Montalvo, fundador y primer presidente de la European Bars Federation (FBE) fue el encargado de clausurar el segundo día de Congreso con un discurso que recordó el objetivo fundacional de la FBE y la especial importancia de la Fundación en tiempos de cambios como los actuales.

 

Sábado, 1 de junio

El último día de Congreso se celebró la Asamblea General en la que los miembros de la FBE adoptaron tres resoluciones. La primera de ellas, sobre el estado de derecho y la libertad de expresión en Turquía; la segunda, en relación a los atentados contra abogados en Colombia; y, la tercera, la adhesión a la Carta de los Derechos de los ciudadanos en la era digital, un proyecto impulsado por el Ilustre Colegio de la Abogacía de Barcelona.

COLOMBIAN CARAVANA REPORT 2018

On March 25, 2019, a momentous event took place in the building of the Law Society in London. On this day, the Final Report of the Colombian Caravan 2018 mission was submitted.

This event has been honored by many personages. Our Federation (FBE) was represented by the President of the Federation Mr Michele Lucherini who gave a welcome speech.

The discussion panel about Colombian facts was led by the excellent Prof. Sara Chandler. The FBE Human Rights Commission was represented by its President Mr Artur Wierzbicki and its members Mr Donovan Lindsay and Mr Nardy Desloover.

The FBE participated in the 6th delegation of jurists to Colombia with members from Italy and the UK.

The Federation supports the peace process and recognises that this is a hugely important period when the peace process is threatened by those who do not respect the rule of law, nor the defence of human rights. After more than 50 years of conflict we welcomed the Peace Agreement and over the last two years the process that began to develop.

The FBE has supported human rights lawyers in Colombia since 2006 when the Congress of the FBE was addressed by human rights lawyer Reinaldo Villalba Vargas.

The FBE Human Rights Commission has a long term programme of support for human rights defenders who are at risk, and face daily threats, attacks and assassination.

The International Caravana travelled to Colombia in September 2018. 20 experts from six countries focused their visit on the impact that the peace process has had on the work of human rights lawyers and the dynamics of the conflict. The Caravana travelled to six regions, meeting with lawyers, judges, human rights defenders, victims, and state representatives, among others.

Delegates observed that violence against human rights defenders and social movements has escalated and that there has been a worrying paradigm shift in relation to the characteristics of threats and how threats are acted upon, and a proliferation and re-emergence of illegal armed groups.

Human rights lawyers in Colombia are at heightened risk because of their work seeking accountability and defending communities’ fundamental rights. Delegates heard reports of repeated aggressions against them: threats to their lives and their families; break-ins and thefts of sensitive information; disciplinary complaints filed to hinder lawyers’ work; and stigmatisation by public officials unduly linking lawyers to their clients or making accusations of their belonging to illegal armed groups.

Human rights defenders and lawyers also face obstacles when seeking timely and appropriate protection from the state. The state’s approach to protection tends to be reactive rather than preventive and lacks understanding of the context in which lawyers work and how to take specific circumstances of geography, culture, and gender into account when allocating protection measures.

It would be far removed from reality to conclude that Colombia is in a period of post-conflict, let alone at peace.

The International Caravana first travelled to Colombia on the invitation of Colombian human rights lawyers in 2008. Our sixth delegation heralded the Caravana’s tenth anniversary of international professional solidarity in defence of human rights, justice, and rule of law.

A steady constant these past ten years is that lawyers, human rights defenders, and social leaders continue to be threatened and killed for seeking justice and defending marginalised communities. Since the signing of the Peace Agreement in November 2016, hundreds of human rights defenders have been assassinated and the UN has called for decisive action to stem the tide of violence enveloping many regions.

Colombian’s official state Ombudsman has reported that a human rights defender is killed every three days. The country is highly polarised. In 2018, two years after the historic signing of the Peace Agreement between the state and the FARC, the Caravana joined a call for justice, truth, reconciliation and non-repetition. As the international community and colleagues in the legal profession around the world, we ask that the Peace Agreement be more than just paper and that

it lead to transformation and transition for Colombia and security and peace for its lawyers, human rights defenders and citizens; a peace which all Colombians deserve.

 

PARTICIPANTS:

Italy, Netherlands, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, México: Massimiliano Buriassi, Francesco Christian Di Nardo, Valeria Verdolini,  Wout Albers, Ron Rosenhart, Carles McCragh Pujà, Gemma Sunyer, Fabian Dreher, Rebecca Chalk, Sara Chandler QC (Hon), Jeffrey Forrest, Charlotte Gill, James Lupton, Christabel McCooey, Natasha Morgan, Lee Pearman, Rachel Rushby, Louise Williams, Sue Willman

 

 Artur Wierzbicki

President of the FBE Human Rights Commission

“Law and justice in the European common home” – Roma, 15th March 2019

FBE’s President, Lucherini, took part in the Congress organized by UIF at the Valdese University of Rome on the theme “Law and justice in the European common home”, with a report on the function and competences of European lawyers and the support of the FBE for protection of fundamental rights. Link to listen and see the speech: https://www.radioradicale.it/scheda/568554/legge-e-giustizia-nella-casa-comune-europea?fbclid=IwAR3huERiU0P-rk7tOLm1GJ2e1LQbIkQqkEndUToDfayMKYc1vxid7ggn9Pk&i=3963368 

47 European Presidents Conference – Wien, 28.02-02.03 2019

FBE took part at the 47 European Presidents Conference 2019 in WIEN about the defense of the state and the rule of law. 28th February – 2nd March 2019.

The European Conference of Presidents has become a forum for dialogue in which the elected representatives of European lawyers’ organizations exchange experiences. The “informal principle” of the European Conference of Presidents with a friendly supporting program has proved its worth for more than a quarter of a century in uninterrupted continuity.

In addition to the traditional supporting program – with events in the Palais Pallavicini we have to mention the workshop in the Palais Ferstel which is the focus of the Viennese Advokatengespräche.

FBE presented a special Magazine containing a report of the 2018 activities (see attached).

FBE International Law Firm of the Future Competition 2019

The Wroclaw Bar Association and The Haague Bar Association are organizing the first FBE International “Law Firm of the Future” Competition from 15th January to 12 April 2019.

The Competition consists of two stages. During the first stage, the Participants shall submit their presentations concerning changes, innovations and/or proposals related to the development of new technologies in the legal services industry.

Any Participant can take part in the first stage of the Competition. Participation entails sending a PowerPoint presentation by 4 March 2019 together with an application form attached as appendix no. 1 to the following e-mail address: dyrektor@oirp.wroclaw.pl

By 20 March 2019, the Jury shall select a group of a maximum of 10 finalists (“Finalists”) who will take part in the second stage of the Competition. By 12 March 2019, the Jury shall inform the Participants, by means of electronic communication, of the outcome of the first stage by sending the information to the e-mail address provided by the Participants.

The second stage of the Competition will take place on 12 April 2019 (Friday) at the head office of the Wrocław Bar Association (Poland). During the second stage, the Finalists will present the subject to the Jury using the submitted presentation. The presentation time shall not exceed 15 minutes. The Jury may ask the Finalists questions regarding the presentation.

The purpose of the Competition is to promote and encourage innovative thinking of young students and lawyers at the start of their career in a time where traditional law practise is changing rapidly.

Furthermore, the purpose of the Competition is to promote the activities of FBE aiming at implementing new IT solutions among lawyers and to encourage the lawyers to use them in their daily practice.

Turkish cases before the ECtHR, “Day of the Endangered Lawyer” – BERLIN – POZNAŃ, 24th January 2019

The Day of the Endangered Lawyer on January 24, 2019 is a day on which we call for the attention for lawyers all over the world who are facing harassment, threats, persecution or even torture and therefore the work of those Colleagues is made increasingly difficult.

We could help our Colleagues in Turkey that day by demonstrating our support in front of Turkish Embassies all over Europe as well as taking part in many panels/discussions. One of panel was organized by Amnesty International and DAV in Berlin/Germany                                                       in Berlin Bar on January 24, 2019 under the tittle :”Turkish cases before the ECtHR”. 

On behalf of FBE Human Rights Commission and OIRP Poznan Human Rights Commission I celebrated that day with my German Colleagues-Lawyers, there. At 2.00 p.m. there was also a opportunity to take part in the peace demonstration in front of Turkish Embassy in Berlin.

 We should realize that since the state of emergency in Turkey was declared in 2016, basing on public datas, 1,500 Turkish lawyers have been prosecuted and around 600 arrested. Around 3,000 judges and prosecutors are said to have lost their posts. In addition to journalists and opposition politicians, the lawyers are in the sights.

Mr Stefan von Raumer (Human Rights Committee DAV Berlin) – a lawyer specialized in international human rights law, co-editor of an ECHR commentary led the mentioning panel,  I was part.

The panelist Mr Ümit Kılınç (human rights lawyer at the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in Strasbourg) said at the meeting  that one could roughly make out three groups among the threatened lawyers. The danger attaches to the clients who are represented. Affected are clients from politically left circles (1), Kurdish clients (2) and followers of the Gülen movement (3).

He gave the lever for prosecution of lawyers in Turkey as Article 301 of the Criminal Code, which criminalizes the public downsizing of the Turkish nation, state or government, as well as judicial bodies. He also stressed that there is little trust among the lawyers in Turkey in the justice system. The last hope is still the Turkish Constitutional Court, but also threatens to be ignored in important decisions by the courts of the courts simply (there was an open showdown in early 2018 because a criminal court had refused to release two journalists).

In his opinion as in many other, the ECtHR was a great hope for number of people, including lawyers in Turkey – but their confidence is dwindling. The ECtHR sees tens of thousands  of cases coming from Turkey and has so far regularly rejected complaints, and instead referred the complainants to the exhaustion of national remedies.

Mr Stefan von Raumer explained he believes that the rigorous handling of the Court eligibility requirement has led to a permanent overburdening of the Human Rights Court since 2011.  He also stressed that the ECtHR would only be prepared to break its stringent admissibility requirements if a complaint authority in a state exists only theoretically but not practically (for example, the ECtHR had accepted this for cases from Serbia, even though there was a complaint authority, but it did not apply to certain legal acts).

In the opinion of many, Turkey must restore the rule of law, release still-detained magistrates and journalists, and lawyers, restore the rights of teachers and magistrates ( judges and prosecutors) who have resigned from July 2016, restore freedom of press and information, end the state of emergency and fully implement the European Convention on Human Rights.

LET’S  STAY  TOGETHER !

 

Artur Wierzbicki

President of Human Rights Commission, FBE

President of Human Rights Commission, OIRP Poznan