(1) The norms that establish the tasks, principles of organization and activity, structure, and competence of the courts. In the USSR, norms on court organization are contained in the Constitution of the USSR, in the constitutions of the Union and autonomous republics, in the Basic Principles of Legislation on Judicial Organization of 1958, in the Statute on Military Tribunals of 1958, and in the Statute on the Supreme Court of the USSR of 1957. In addition, all the Union republics have adopted the Law on Court Organization. Republic laws on court organization deal with the principal questions of court organization and activity in conformity with the ail-Union Basic Principles. At the same time, the individual Union republics resolve certain questions, in so doing taking account of their own historical, national, and other particularities.
(2) A system of judicial institutions. Court organization in the USSR is founded on democratic principles, set forth as early as Nov. 22, 1917, when, with the direct participation of V. I. Lenin, the first decree of Soviet power on the courts was adopted. The democratic essence of Soviet court organization is characterized by the unity of the judicial system, by unitary courts equal for all citizens, by the formation of all courts on the bases of elections and accountability of judges and people’s assessors to the voters or representative organs that elected them, and by the right of voters to recall judges who have failed to uphold the voters’ trust or who have committed acts unworthy of a judge.