In December 2021, The Rights Practice was pleased to respond to a call made by Diego García-Sayán, the UN Special Rapporteur on the Independence of Judges and Lawyers, for information on protection of lawyers. The Special Rapporteur’s forthcoming report to the Human Rights Council (2022) will focus on protection of lawyers from undue interferences lawyers may face in the free and independent exercise of the legal profession. He requested civil society organisations complete a questionnaire to elicit information.

Our submission focuses on the protection of lawyers in China. There are a number of legislative, administrative and institutional barriers that hinder the work of criminal and rights defence lawyers in China. Lawyers do not have full access to meet their clients, read case files, collect evidence or take human rights-related cases without fear of harassment or detention. 'Residential surveillance in a designated location' (RSDL) is a form of incommunicado detention used to target lawyers and restrict access to lawyers. We call on China to repeal RSDL.

Read our full submission here.