Yssyk-kul-2016: Meetup of the representatives of constitutional courts from 18 countries

Jul 1, 2016

Chairpersons and judges of constitutional courts of Thailand, Bulgaria, Latvia, Azerbaijan, Turkey, Russian Federation, Republic of Korea, Lithuania, Armenia, Croatia, Rumania, Ukraine, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Indonesia, Mongolia and the Kyrgyz Republic as well as experts of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe took part in the international conference “Role and importance of constitutional control institutions in effective performance of the system of checks and balances between the branches of the state power”.

The major objectives of the Conference was to exchange experience and opinions on problems, practices and trends of developing constitutional control in the system of checks and balances. Constitutional courts play major role of constitutional courts in supporting the constitutional system of balances, developing the legal culture of the citizens and proper interpretation of the Constitution.

This has a special value in the countries of the developing democracy, such as the Kyrgyz Republic and the CIS states that are currently characterized by highly dynamic processes of developing their independence, as well as the operationalization of various components of the state machinery.

Very often in their practice the Constitutional control institutions are faced with unique problems and difficult legal challenges, which they have never dealt with before but which require solution.  

In his opening speech Mr. Mukanbet Kasymaliev, the Chairman of the Constitutional Chamber stressed: “The major role of the Constitutional Chamber in strengthening the system of checks and balances. It is strict observance of constitutional principles, in case of abuse by any of the branches of power and exceeding its authority, the constitutional control institution requires the obedience to the provisions of the Constitution and stay within legal framework.”

Mr. Alexander Kashkarev, UNDP Democratic Governance Program Leader welcomed the participants on behalf of the United Nations Development Program and stressed the relevance of the conference topic. He also said that the principle of separation of powers is one of the fundamental ones in a state based on the rule of law, which is supported by the UN. “The role of constitutional courts as the law guardians is currently increasing. One can hardly overestimate the work done by constitutional control bodies in strengthening the rule of law, supporting the system of constitutional balances, development of legal culture of the population and proper interpretation of the Constitution. They facilitate settling of disputes between the branches of power and elaborate long - term and sustainable legal solutions. These solutions are legal and not political,” – said Mr. Kashkarev.  

During the conference international participants made their thematic presentations that allowed to see the global situation and make the analysis.

"The key moment which defines the unique role of the constitutional court in balancing of the state power is the function of the constitutional control in the country - evaluation of performance of a government body or legal acts issued by it in terms of their correspondence to the Constitution – afterwards to issue a relevant verdict,” - said Mr. Sergiy Sas, the Judge of the Constitutional Court of Ukraine.

Mr. Farkhad Abdullaev, the Chairman of the Constitutional Court of Azerbaijan, while speaking about the role of the constitutional justice in protecting the rule of law values, highlighted the importance of constitutional control institutions in the system of protecting the Constitution, as the Constitutional Court, which is out of politics, deals exclusively with the issues of law and is not the subject of political relations.

“Constitutional control body is undoubtedly the central one in the national judicial system. This means that serious fragments of reforms of a constitutional court are accepted and in various manners replicated by other branches of judicial power in a given country,” said Mr. Mikhail Kleandrov, the Judge of the Constitutional Court of the Russian Federation.

Mr. Vladimir Grosu, the member of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe stated that constitutional justice is an indispensable element in operationalization of the system of checks and balances. When other state institutions publicly attack constitutional control bodies, the independence, objectivity and neutrality of these institutions are jeopardized. “Even if the authorities publicly express their disagreement with the decisions of the constitutional control bodies, they have the decisions are implemented despite their disagreement. The Venice Commission condemns such practices as they do not correspond to the principles of the rule of law and separation of powers,” he added.

During the conference speeches were also made by the members of the Jogorku Kenesh of the Kyrgyz Republic, experts and representatives of academia.

Summarizing the results of the conference, Mr. Mukanbet Kasymaliev expressed gratitude to the participants for their attendance, thanked the rapporteurs for their presentations.

The results of the conference will be presented in the Collection of the conference materials; this publication is aimed at enriching the constitutional science of the Kyrgyz Republic and will be made accessible to a broad range of stakeholders: politicians, judges, researchers, the legal community and the civil society organizations.

The conference was organized by the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of the Kyrgyz Republic with the support from UNDP in the Kyrgyz Republic.

Altynai Akmatova, UNDP Democratic Governance Communication Specialist


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