Second Meeting of the Network of Afghan Constitutionalists in Heidelberg

Afghan Constitutionalists and International Experts Discuss Current Challenges for Afghanistan in the Area of Constitutional Law

The Network of Afghan Constitutionalists met for the second time in Heidelberg from 4 to 7 November, 2014. Having previously discussed the Afghan constitution’s successes in addressing socio-political problems at the first conference, the participants discussed current challenges being faced in Afghan constitutional law at this second conference under the title “Current Constitutional Issues – Searching for Solutions”. 15 Afghan experts on constitutional law from the network participated in the conference. In addition, experts from the Foundation, the Max Planck Institute for Comparative Public Law and International Law and the Hamida Barmaki Organization for the Rule of Law also gave specialised lectures. Em. Prof. Dr. Dr. h.c. Rüdiger Wolfrum, who is a judge at the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea and one on the Foundation’s managing directors, also took part in the conference.

The conference placed special emphasis on the topic of the constitutional and legal basis of the current arrangement of government and on the need for an independent branch of jurisdiction for constitutional law in the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan. In addition, it was also possible to arrange a visit to Judge Prof. Dr. Doris König at the Federal Constitutional Court of Germany in Karlsruhe.

Participants agreed on the creation of two working groups. One working group will meet in Kabul in the coming months to discuss the topics of the political system and electoral law in Afghanistan and develop specific recommendations to address the relevant issues in constitutional law. The second working group is to focus on the topic of the need for an independent branch of jurisdiction for constitutional law and will also develop positions on this matter at meetings.

The results of the working groups’ efforts will be presented at the network’s next conference in Heidelberg, with the aim of providing a clear contribution to the discussion of the forthcoming amendments to the Constitution of the Islamic Republic of Afghanistan.

The conference was funded by the German Foreign Office.

More information about the network can be found here.