Supporting the Kyrgyzstani legal defense community
With backing from the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), ABA ROLI has conducted its Support to the Kyrgyzstani Legal Defense Community Program since 2012 in an effort to improve access to an impartial justice system and enhance the capacity, skills and knowledge of practicing attorneys and the next generation of Kyrgyzstani lawyers. This program was instrumental in aiding the passage of the Law on Advocatura, which established the National Advocatura — the first unified defense bar association in the country. ABA ROLI continues to support the growth of the Advocatura in addition to seven legal clinics around the country, as well as the Legal Clinics Association aimed at providing students with practical legal experience.
Strengthening the criminal defense community
Through its U.S. Department of State, International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs (INL)-funded Criminal Defense Community Development Program, ABA ROLI seeks to strengthen defense advocates through a comprehensive continuing legal education (CLE) system and by organizing networking opportunities among advocates. ABA ROLI supports the Advocates Training Center to develop mandatory and elective CLE coursework, which in time will be uploaded to an online learning platform so that advocates only need internet access to complete mandatory CLE requirements. To complement this, ABA ROLI furnished resource centers in all nine regional advocatura headquarters with computers and access to a legal database so advocates have a place to go with reliable internet access and legal resources.