Putin for increasing trust in court system

Russian President Vladimir Putin deems it necessary to increase citizens' trust in the court system. The Russian head of state said this at his meeting with the Chairman of the Constitutional Court, Vladimir Zorkin.

"First of all, I would like to hear your opinion of the progress of the court reform," said Mr. Putin.

"This process has been going on for quite a long time. Its [the reform's] major goals were to raise the efficiency of the court system and increase citizens' trust in the court system. There are serious problems with the latter," said the Russian president.

Valery Zorkin in turn noted, "the reform had on whole been accomplished, though with some problems." Opinion polls have shown that "the majority of citizens distrust courts, and some of them think that they are corrupt," said the chairman of the Constitutional Court.

Vladimir Putin suggested to Mr. Zorkin that the Constitutional Court prepare a review of the constitutional law to react rapidly to the changes in this sphere (the observation of the Constitution, correspondence between draft laws and constitutional laws).

Mr. Zorkin said that last year the Constitutional Court had received 15,000 complaints from Russian citizens. He emphasized that the ruling of the Constitutional Court on the legality or illegality of a certain law was of big importance because it touched upon many different laws.

Moreover, the head of the Constitutional Court expressed concern over the instability of the legislation. "Even the administrative and the criminal procedural codes have been amended by nearly 50%," said Mr. Zorkin.

In his words, the lack of legal stability leads to the fact that citizens do not know what to expect. This is true "not only for citizens but also partners of our country," said the chairman of the constitutional court.

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