Access to Justice in Tajikistan

Project completed
A lawyer sits at her desk and discusses with a woman.
In the Dushanbe Legal Aid Center, lawyers provide legal consultation to everyone in need of the service. ©Helvetas

Through this project, Switzerland will accompany the Government in realizing a state system providing free legal aid, which will allow the vulnerable (poor) individuals in Tajikistan to better protect their rights and in particular to claim various benefits (e.g. pensions, child allowances). This system will replace the current NGO provided legal aid services. A space for dialogue between civil society and state authorities will also be preserved and will contribute to addressing further legal challenges faced by the population.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Human rights
Conflict & fragility
Conflict prevention and transformation
Legal and judicial development
Human rights (incl. Women's rights)
Conflict prevention
01.12.2016 - 31.03.2021
CHF  4’200’000

In 2015 the Government adopted the State Concept on free legal aid as part of the national legal and judicial reform in Tajikistan. The main objective of the Concept is to establish a system of state run free legal aid for the vulnerable people in Tajikistan. This reform received clear political support and is led by the Ministry of Justice of Tajikistan. The current system of legal aid, partially provided through the NGOs, is unable to respond to the growing needs of the population arising from the worsening economic situation and related social issues.


People, in particular the most vulnerable, claim and enjoy their rights through better access to justice.

Target groups

The main project target group will constitute of the state and NGO legal aid providers (centres), defense lawyers, paralegals, local authorities and other state and non-governmental organizations involved in the legal aid and legal system reforms.

The end beneficiaries of the project are the population of Tajikistan and particularly the vulnerable individuals with low income (women especially), who will benefit from the free legal aid services.

Medium-term outcomes
  • People, in particular the most vulnerable, are aware of their rights and use free legal aid services to protect them
  • The system of free legal aid provides effective services to the population
  • Strengthened civil society takes up key legal issues in dialogue with local and national authorities, leading to appropriate responses

Results from previous phases:  

Thanks to the project support the Government adopted the State Concept on free legal aid in 2015. The first 4 state legal aid centres are supported in the framework of the piloting of the Concept.

More than 15’000 individuals (70% women) received legal aid provided by NGO centres with the project support.

Policy dialogue between the state and the civil society organizations has been facilitated, resulting in support provided to the specific reform initiatives on the legal aid and civil registry issues.

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Swiss cooperation with Eastern Europe
Project partners Contract partner
Private sector
United Nations Organization (UNO)
  • Foreign private sector North
  • United Nations Development Programme

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    4’200’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    4’235’110
Project phases Phase 3 01.07.2021 - 31.07.2025   (Current phase)

Phase 2 01.12.2016 - 31.03.2021   (Completed)

Phase 1 01.12.2012 - 30.11.2016   (Completed)