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On July 25, the Commentaries to the RA Judicial Code of Conduct were presented at the Court of Cassation of Armenia. The commentaries, which are available in Armenian and English, provide interpretations, explanations, and examples of the rules of judicial ethics that were adopted in 2005. The commentaries were prepared by a working group of the Judges’ Association of Armenia, under the general editorship of Cassation Court Chairman Hovhannes Manukyan and with technical assistance provided by the Rule of Law Initiative in Armenia.
Armenian and American judges praised the commentaries at a news conference on July 25, 2007. Visiting United States Senior Circuit Judge John M. Walker, Jr. hailed the Commentaries as setting standards of behavior for all the judges of Armenia that are “consistent with international standards.” Judge Walker noted that the Code of Judicial Conduct and the Commentaries “highlight the three necessary components of a judiciary that is governed by law: Independence, Integrity, and Impartiality” and demonstrate Armenia’s continued commitment to the rule of law.
Mr. Manukyan also noted that the commentaries would help improve the public perception of the judiciary. Judge Davit Avetisyan, who chaired the working group that prepared the commentaries, emphasized that the commentaries clarified ethical standards for judges by making it clear that not only must judges remain independent and impartial in fact, but they must also be perceived by the public as independent and impartial.