For judiciary independence, China needs fair lawyering
The very first step toward judiciary independence in China should be to introduce a culture of vibrant lawyering by defence lawyers rather than guarantee greater discretion for judges in adjudication.
Judges interpret and apply the law to cases submitted by lawyers; hence, judges assume meaningful judiciary independence only if they first access uncensored details of cases brought by lawyers, a practice often denied in the Communist state. Whether their access itself remains uninhibited or free of political interference remains only secondary.
Fully guaranteed lawyering will deliver justice the Chinese people have long sought.
Choi Si-young, Editing adviser on Yonsei European studies at Yonsei University