On April 18, the South Asia Center’s Afghanistan Rising Initiative hosted Kimberley Motley for a conversation about her experiences as an international litigator in Afghanistan and around the world, as well as her advocacy for rule of law and human rights worldwide. In her remarks, she emphasized how the rule of law means little if the role of law is not promoted in societies where the criminal justice system is weak or faces deep cultural roadblocks. She spoke candidly about her experiences as a litigator in Afghanistan’s courts, how she works from within the judicial system in place, and her commitment to improving legal representation for marginalized populations worldwide. She underscored her belief that the problems facing Afghanistan and the many countries she has worked in are not localized problems, but a problem for all of us.
Kimberley Motley is the first and only western litigator navigating the struggling and capricious legal system in Afghanistan. She has successfully litigated all of her cases in Afghanistan for over seven years. With her global practice she represents clients on almost every continent and focuses on cases of foreign defendants, and International commercial entities, as well as pro-bono human rights cases, which constitute at least 30% of her work. She is the founder of the JUSTNESS PROJECT that seeks to raise the bar for legal representation globally. Her career as an international litigator in Afghanistan is profiled in the new documentary film Motley’s Law.