Appeals as part of global justice system

Belarus introduces legal opportunity to make appeals to all national courts

Belarus introduces legal opportunity to make appeals to all national courts.

At its recent session, the Council on Issues of Legal and Judicial Activity under the President of Belarus (which has court representatives and scientist-lawyers) has studied a problem which has been an issue since the 1990s, the implementation of appeals proceedings in the legal practice of all courts.

The idea of legally being able to make appeals in this country was first voiced twenty years ago when the concept of court-legal reform was developed. However, until recently, the issue remained unresolved. In 2004, the first system of its kind was introduced in the economic courts and has since then been successfully used. In all other cases, the only means of court appeal is to overturn the judgment. This means that a superior authority would investigate the court proceedings but fail to independently question witnesses and perform an expert examination; as a result, a case is sent for re-examination to the very same court where the complaint has been made. The introduction of an appeals process would enable these agencies to independently study a case and pass a new judgment if necessary.

The Constitutional Court has been informed that the possibility of making an appeal is global legal practice and is widely applied in Germany, France, Russia, Kazakhstan, Ukraine and elsewhere. The Council’s recent decision will soon be sent to the President. If approved, the Criminal Code will undergo alterations.

By Svetlana Isaenok

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