“A Great Danger for Lawyers”: New Regulatory Curbs on Lawyers Representing Protesters

“A Great Danger for Lawyers”

New Regulatory Curbs on Lawyers Representing Protesters

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I. Summary

II. International Standards for Lawyers

III. The Legal Profession: A General Lack of Independence

IV. Mass Cases and the Rights Protection Movement

V. The New Guiding Opinions

A. Tightening of control by the judicial bureaus and other governmental departments

B. Requiring lawyers to share confidential information with the authorities

C. Strengthening of controls exercised by the lawyers associations

D. Introduction of specific requirements for accepting cases

E. Greater restrictions on working with petitioners

F. Discouraging contacts with media and foreign organizations

G. Requiring lawyers to take cases based on their possible effect on “stability”

H. Intimidating sanctions

VI. Promulgation of Local Versions of the Guiding Opinions

VII. Lawyers’ Reactions to the New Restrictions and the Government’s Response

A. Lawyers’ initial reactions

B. Government response

VIII. Recommendations

To the Chinese government

To the United Nations

To the international law community


Appendix I: Guiding Opinions of the All-China Lawyers Association on Lawyers Handling Mass Cases






Appendix II: Glossary of Chinese Terms

December 2006 Volume 18, No. 15(C)