I wish to be associated with Jonathan Goldsmith’s blog of 9 March. I have read the Gazette for over 30 years and have periodically seen stories of lawyers being threatened by the states in which they work. I have always assumed that this could not happen in the UK, home of Magna Carta.
It is essential to the rule of law in any democracy that lawyers are allowed to challenge the state on behalf of their clients. When Dick says ‘let’s kill all the lawyers’ in Henry VI, Part 2, it is because the person he is talking to, Cade, wants to become an autocratic ruler. They know that it would be necessary to eliminate lawyers to achieve this.
The UN’s Basic Principles on the Role of Lawyers (1990) recognises this. I am ashamed that our own government does not.
Steven Jonas, partner, Jonas Roy Bloom, Birmingham