Human Rights at the centre of the 2nd workshop for female judges in Afghanistan

Female judges from Kabul and the city environs convened for the workshop

Human rights were the focus of the workshop discussion organised by the Max Planck Foundation and the Afghan Legal Research Development Organisation (ALRDO), its Kabul-based partner, from 14 to 18 of November 2020. This workshop, which involved around 30 female judges from Kabul and the surrounding area, built upon the first one which was conducted earlier this autumn and focused on constitutional law. A hybrid format was adopted including in-person presentations delivered by Afghan experts alongside online presentations delivered by the Foundation’s Research Fellows through pre-recorded videos, dubbed into Dari. These videos were followed by live discussions, which offered an opportunity for direct interaction.

Expert presentations started with an introduction to human rights, including through an international, comparative as well as a national perspective. The workshop then explored selected human rights, such as the right to equality and to a fair trial. It also offered sessions on the balancing between conflicting rights, including from an Islamic perspective. This topic was particularly well received and offered judges the opportunity to engage with presenters on methodologies on how to reconcile religious rights with equality rights.

The Afghan Supreme Court also contributed to the event. A representative of the Judicial Training Department delivered a presentation on the right to a fair trial in the Afghan system. During the closing session, the Head of the Judicial Training Department of the Supreme Court praised the work of the Foundation and ALRDO and expressed eagerness to pursue further joint activities.

The event was part of the project “the Afghan Woman Judges Association: empowerment through capacity building, partnership and advocacy” funded by the German Federal Foreign Office.