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China to step up building legal service network


08:08, July 12, 2013

BEIJING, July 11 (Xinhua) -- China will step up the construction of a legal service network that covers both urban and rural areas, especially underdeveloped places, the justice ministry said Thursday.

The country has 230,000 practicing lawyers and more than 20,000 law offices but 164 counties still have no lawyers working there.

At a conference of senior justice officials held in Beijing, the ministry urged local departments to solve the lack of lawyers in underdeveloped areas.

The government should encourage law offices to open branches in areas without lawyers and organize more volunteers to provide legal services in these regions, the ministry said.

Legal services have been playing an important role in improving people's livelihood and social security in recent years.

The conference called for lowering the threshold of legal assistance so that the service network can reach more people in need.

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