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Constitutional Principles of the Organization and Activity of Swiss Courts.

Discussion of the main theme of the article is preceded by a comparative analysis of the provisions of the 1874 Constitution of Switzerland concerning the judicial system and the new Constitution that came into force on 1 January 2000. The author reaches the conclusion that most of the principles determining legal organization and activity characteristic of developed democracies are enshrined at constitutional level in Switzerland. At the same time, the Swiss resolution of the problem of the independence and accountability of judges is a singular one. The fact that there are special observer bodies (in some cantons- from representative, in others – from the executive powers), that have the right to enact disciplinary measures on judges, bears witness of a degree of limitation of the principle of the independence of judges because, if it is observed, disciplinary measures ought to be implemented by judicial self-regulation bodies formed by the legal community. Moreover, such an important principle as the principle of the irremovability of judges, characteristic to the constitutions of developed democracies, is lacking.

Yu.S. Pilipenko

Source publication: The State and the Law. [Gosudarstvo i pravo] 2001, No.6

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