In May, the Kosovo Chamber of Advocates (KCA) received notice that it had obtained full membership in the International Bar Association (IBA). This membership represents a tremendous organizational success, as the application process took two years as a result of the country’s unresolved political status.
“This is a great moment for us and for Kosovo,” says KCA President Musa Dragusha, who firmly believes that IBA membership is a meaningful accomplishment for Kosovo’s legal profession—and also for the recognition of Kosovo’s statehood.
Through IBA membership, the KCA will be able to connect with partners and resources from around the globe. The IBA, established in 1947, has considerable expertise in providing professional assistance to the international legal community. With its membership of 30,000 lawyers and 195 bar associations and law societies, the IBA offers many benefits to its members. As a member organization, the KCA will be able to take part in exchange programs, learn about best practices and make contacts with lawyers and bar associations outside of Kosovo.
IBA membership comes during a critical reform period for the KCA, as many changes outlined in the strategic plan are being implemented. Since 2000, the ABA Rule of Law Initiative has worked with the KCA, both on its strategic planning efforts and on strengthening its professional licensing capacity.
“We believe that being a full member of the prestigious bar association will help us in creating a path toward a stronger legal tradition,” says Mr.Dragusha.
Membership in the IBA will build upon the KCA’s existing cooperation with other national bar associations. This collaboration has proven to be quite useful, as the KCA has gained insights from those bar associations with longer histories and more developed legal systems.
To learn more about our work in Kosovo, contact the ABA Rule of Law Initiative at [email protected].