27 participants representing lawyer groups, human rights non-governmental organizations and the media from Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova, Russia and Ukraine have been invited to participate in the visit by the organizers – the Human Rights House Network, funded by the Council of Europe.
On the first day of the visit the graduates of the project attended the court hearing of the case "Natsvlishvili and Togonidze v. Georgia» in the European Court of Human Rights. Interestingly, two of the three representatives of the applicant are directly connected to the Electronic Education project. Kirill Koroteev, a member of the jury trial, an international expert of the Project, as well as Elena Fileeva, National Expert from Georgia in 2009-2011 joined the suit as parties plaintiff at the hearing before the European Court.
After a hearing in the Court the participants of the visit discussed the latest trends in the European system of human rights protection with the lawyer of the Court Andrei Yesin.
The program of the visit also included the session with the staff of the Council of Europe dedicated to the various aspects of human rights protection, enforcement of the European Court of Human Rights decisions and the interaction of national NGOs and institutions of the Council of Europe. Participants of the visit had the opportunity to ask questions and actively participate in discussions with experts from the Council of Europe.
After the lecture of the expert of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance Paula Eck-Walters, the graduates of the project from Azerbaijan and Russia appealed to the Council of Europe with the Joint Statement on preventing the escalation of ethnic violence in these countries due to the recent tragic events in Moscow district Biryulevo.
The visit also included meetings with the organizers of the educational visit: the head of the department for national implementation – Tatiana Termachich, Program Manager – Sergey Dikman, as well as with the staff of the Council of Europe HELP program for distance education of lawyers and attorneys of the former Soviet space.
Overall, for the project alumni the educational visit appeared to be great platform to reinforce the knowledge about human rights, which they have received during the the distance learning course.
"International Law in Advocacy" is a program jointly implemented by several member organizations of the Human Rights House Network. The program aims to increase the knowledge and skills of lawyers in international human rights protection, to facilitate the implementation of international human rights standards in national practice and to provide better protection for HR defenders and victims of fundamental rights violations.
"The Electronic Human Rights Education for Lawyers" (EHREL) is a project under the Human Rights House Network program "International Law in Advocacy" prepared and implemented in cooperation with Human Rights House Foundation’s partner organizations.
The project is designed to bring lawyers from CIS countries together via online human rights training material prepared by international and national experts. The learning process is supervised by a team of managers, regional partners and coordinators.