China publishes key guideline on legal education, stresses “firm stand” to oppose Western erroneous views

The Global Times reports

The general offices of the Communist Party of China (CPC) Central Committee and the State Council released a guideline on strengthening legal education and theory research in the new era, which requires law school teachers, students and relevant personnel to have a firm stand to oppose and resist Western “constitutionalism,” “separation of three powers” and other erroneous views.

Experts believed that the guideline is the latest, most systematic and authoritative document in the field of law and under the rule of law since the country’s reform and opening-up began more than 40 years ago.

Legal education and theoretical research shoulder the mission of training high-quality legal talent and providing scientific theoretical support for building the rule of law in China, which plays an important role in promoting the rule of law in an all-round way, said the guideline.

The guideline “combines opening-up with the building of the rule of law more accurately,” and promotes “comprehensive and in-depth opening-up” with better support in legal education, theory research and the building of the rule of law in the country, promoting the theorization and institutionalization of Xi Jinping Thought on the Rule of Law in a comprehensive and accurate manner, Tian Feilong, a legal expert at Beihang University in Beijing, told the Global Times on Monday.

Upholding Party leadership is the fundamental guarantee of the socialist rule of law. We must follow firmly the path of socialist rule of law with Chinese characteristics, preserving the organic unity of Party leadership, the running of the country by the people, and law-based governance, guiding law school teachers and students as well as personnel working on legal theories to take a clear and firm stand, opposing and resisting Western erroneous views, according to the guideline.

It aims to ensure that socialist legal education and legal theory research are always connected to the correct political direction, making the law a form of social science, which can play a constructive and positive role in national governance, Tian noted.

The guideline provides specific directions and deployment for how the leadership of the Party is implemented in an all-round way from legal education to legal theory research, conforming to socialist core values, Tian said.

By 2025, the regional distribution of law schools and academic disciplines will be more balanced, and the legal education management and guidance system will be improved, with the quality of personnel training steadily improved as well, said the guideline.

By 2035, a number of world-class law schools with Chinese characteristics will be established, cultivating a number of law experts and scholars with international influence, which will continue to cultivate high-quality talent, with a system in terms of legal science discipline, the academy and the discourse established with Chinese characteristics, according to the guideline.

Zhang Xixian, a professor at the Party School of the CPC Central Committee in Beijing, told the Global Times on Monday that on the new journey to achieve the second centenary goal in the new era, we need to think about how to establish international relations with Chinese characteristics instead of simply copying the Western mode.

We have encountered problems in the past decades in the legal system with some based on the Western teaching mode, Zhang noted. “Now we need to strengthen the adjustment and reform of the entire law disciplinary system to make it suitable for fully building a modern socialist country with Chinese characteristics.”