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How to Kill a Dragon? Answers from a Sino-Swiss Workshop on Law Enforcement

Sino-Swiss Workshop on Law Enforcement, 5 and 6 November 2012

This provocative question dealing with Chinese mythic wildlife was at the centre of attention during the closing session of a Sino-Swiss Workshop on Law Enforcement, held in Fribourg on 5 and 6 November 2012. The event brought together a delegation of eight professors from the China University of Political Science and Law (CUPL), invited guest speakers and members of the Institute of Federalism and the Law Faculty of the University of Fribourg. The academic exchange, which has a long tradition, contributed to a better understanding of the challenges both countries face. Among other things were discussed the roles of governments, state administrations, courts and NGO’s in law enforcement in selected fields as business and criminal law, environment protection as well as its relation to rule of law and how those regulations are applied in both countries.

Another discussed topic was different aspects of the justiciability of the constitution in both countries: a limit to state power as rule of law, is written in the Swiss Constitution (art. 5); in China such as clause does not exist. The power of government (in China) and people (e.g.in case of popular initiatives in Switzerland) can override existing constitutional provisions. This – on a first glance - seemingly deadpan academic question proved therefore to be challenging, as the task to kill a dragon. To be continued.