LAWFUEL – The Legal Newswire – Canada is giving $8-million to projects in Afghanistan to set up a national legal aid program and to promote other justice and rule-of-law initiatives, the federal government said Thursday.
Josee Verner, the minister of international cooperation, said the projects will be implemented by the International Criminal Defence Attorneys Association (ICDAA), Rights & Democracy and CANADEM.
“Canada’s funding will help extend the scope of legal-judicial reform in Afghanistan to reach the most disadvantaged, including women and some of the most vulnerable elements of society,” Verner said in a statement.
Getting a functional and effective legal aid system off the ground will be the focus of one of the projects, set to receive $2.9-million. The ICDAA, in collaboration with the International Legal Foundation-Afghanistan, has been giving legal-aid services to some Afghans since 2003. But the boost in funding from Canada will help create a nationalized, Afghan-run legal aid service provider, the government said. The funding will also be used to work with the Afghan ministry of justice to develop a national policy on legal aid.