In 2022 Regional Dialogue, with the cooperation of the Chamber of Advocates, launched a nationwide competition Exceptional Lawyer of Uzbekistan. This competition aims to recognize the professional excellence and achievements of lawyers and raise awareness in society about the importance of the profession of a defense lawyer. That is especially important due to the low numbers of defense attorneys in Uzbekistan, who are crucial in developing a fair adversarial legal system and protecting the Rule of Law.
Regional Dialogue has been worked closely with the Chamber of Advocates on the design and development of the project, providing support with establishing procedures for the competition, identifying the application requirements, assessment criteria, and selection process. On December 5, 2023, the winners of the Exceptional lawyer 2023” competition were announced during the ceremony held by the Committee of the Senate of the Oliy Majlis. The purpose of the competition was to identify and reward defense lawyers for their exceptional efforts and achievements in the field of human rights protection, contribution to the development of the legal profession and the justice system of the Republic of Uzbekistan.
We are delighted to officially announce the winners of the "Exceptional Lawyer 2023" competition:
1. The Sanjar Yakubov Award for Professional Excellence (Recognizes the defense lawyers for utmost professionalism and competence in the field of law, and with outstanding achievements in defense) was presented to Lilia Vijel. ( ENG / UZB / RUS )
2. The Richard Stoddard Award for Exceptional Contribution to Legal Reforms (Recognizes the defense lawyers for exceptional efforts in making positive changes to the justice system of the Republic of Uzbekistan) was presented to Jasur Ne’matov. ( ENG / UZB / RUS )
3. The Rising Star Award (Recognizes defense lawyers younger than 35 years of age) was presented to Diyorbek Islambekov.
4. Award for Defense of Women and Children Against Violence (Recognizes the defense lawyers for exceptional efforts in protecting the rights of women and children against violence) was presented Dilfuza Gaybullaeva.
5. Award for Defense of Disadvantaged and Vulnerable Groups (Recognizes the defense lawyers for exceptional efforts in protecting the rights of disadvantaged people and vulnerable groups) was presented to Shahlo Mamarahimova.
6. Award for Contribution to Public Legal Literacy (Recognizes the defense lawyers for exceptional efforts in raising the legal literacy of citizens) was presented to Kamaliddin Baxavadinov.
Regional Dialogue has been working closely with the Chamber of Advocates on the design and development of the project, providing support with establishing procedures for the competition, identifying the application requirements, assessment criteria, selection process, and timeline of the project with deadlines. A commission competitively selected five advocates who had remarkable achievements in the legal profession with special attention on promoting human rights, engaging with disadvantaged and vulnerable populations, focusing on protecting those who need it, and promoting the profession of defense advocates through such efforts and achievements. There were 5 categories in which the defense lawyers competed: Professional Excellence, Successful Defense of Human Rights, Rising Star, Mentorship, and Active Involvement in Legal Reforms. The winners in each category were selected by the selection committee and invited to the awarding ceremony that took place at Hilton Tashkent City on 10 February 2023.
The winners of the competition by categories are: