Judge joins Council of Europe

  • 2005-11-30
  • From wire reports
TALLINN - Supreme Court judge Julia Laffranque has been elected vice president of the Council of Europe's Consultative Council of European Judges.
Representatives from 46 member countries of the CE elected Laffranque, 31, at a session in Strasbourg last week. The Estonian's mandate as vice president runs for two years, spokespeople for the Supreme Court said.

The Committee of Ministers set up the council of judges in 2000 to provide member states with recommendations on how to improve administration of justice standards. The council is unique in Europe because it consists exclusively of judges.

The body's latest recommendations concerned a court's relations with the public and media. Earlier work has dealt with the independence of judges, additional training, ethics and responsibility, and fair trial.

"The next issue the council is going to address is the fight against terrorism," Laffranque said. "In my opinion, the Council of Europe pays even more attention than the European Union to the subject of courts and judiciary."

"The EU focuses mainly on harmonization of legislation and relations with the European court," she continued. "Whereas the Council of Europe approaches the subject more broadly and thoroughly, including the role of judges in the society."