Strasbourg Observers

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  • Alexandra Timmer

S.H. and Others v Austria: margin of appreciation and IVF

November 09, 2011

In Austria, it is forbidden to use donated sperm or ova for in vitro fertilization (‘IVF’). Ovum donation is under all circumstances prohibited; sperm donation is only possible when the sperm is directly placed in the womb of a woman (in vivo artificial insemination). Two Austrian couples complained about this regulation; the first couple needs […]

  • Guest Blogger

Trafficking in Persons and the European Court of Human Rights

October 26, 2011

This guest post was written by Dr. Roberta Avellino. Dr. Avellino studied Law at the University of Malta where she graduated as Doctor of Laws. She has moreover obtained a Master of Laws in International Law following research on trafficking in persons, security governance and State responsibility. She has recently published an article on the […]

  • Maris Burbergs

Ambit and Scope of Article 8 in Citizenship Cases

October 23, 2011

In a recent judgment in the case of Genovese v. Malta the Court gave very few words when determining the scope and ambit of Article 8. The Court managed to exclude a right, find no violation and determine the scope in the same sentence, and, in contrary to previous citizenship cases, did not give one word […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Bah v UK: on immigration, discrimination and worrisome reasoning

October 12, 2011

This post was co-authored by Lourdes Peroni and Alexandra Timmer The Court recently ruled on the case of Ms. Bah, a Sierra Leonean woman with indefinite leave to remain in the UK, who asserted that she was discriminated against in the allocation of social housing. The Court’s reasoning in Bah v. UK gives ample food […]

  • Guest Blogger

Karttunen v. Finland: Child Pornography and Freedom of Expression

October 10, 2011

Today’s guest post was written by Rónán Ó Fathaigh, one of our colleagues at the Human Rights Centre. More information on Rónán can be found on the website of the Center for Journalism Studies of Ghent University, here. In a recent admissibility decision which has received scant attention, the European Court considered for the first […]

  • Maris Burbergs

The right to bury one’s relatives

October 06, 2011

In a recent judgement in the case of Girard v. France  (in French) the Court recognized a new right under Article 8 – the right to bury one’s relatives. This case involved three aspects of dealing with an individual’s remains under the Convention: returning the body to relatives, organizing and attending a funeral, and treatment […]

  • Guest Blogger

Stummer v. Austria: gradually moving towards a right to an old-age pension for working prisoners?

October 03, 2011

By Ingrid Leijten. Ingrid Leijten works as a Ph.D. fellow and teaching assistant at the Leiden University Faculty of Law, Department of Constitutional and Administrative Law. Her research interest lies in the development of the ECHR and the practice of the ECtHR in relation to the Member States’ policymaking. Stummer v. Austria deals with the […]

  • Lourdes Peroni

When is Family Life Family Life? A Look at Deportation Cases

September 27, 2011

In A.A. v. the United Kingdom, a recent case involving the deportation of a young Nigerian man, the Court faced, once again, the question whether relationships between adult children and parents/siblings amount to family life in deportation cases. The Court’s Fourth Section did not give a clear answer to this question. The 24-year-old applicant resided […]

  • Guest Blogger

Grand Chamber Judgment on Trade Union Freedom of Expression

September 14, 2011

This post is written by Rónán Ó Fathaigh* and Dirk Voorhoof** The Grand Chamber of the European Court issued a landmark judgment this week on trade union freedom of expression, concluding that the dismissal of trade union members for engaging in offensive and insulting expression in a union newsletter was not a violation of the […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Mainstreaming the Human Rights of Older Persons

September 05, 2011

After a long time of neglect, there is an increasing awareness and recognition of the human rights of older persons within the international human rights community. Several stakeholders have issued a call for a ‘UN Convention on the Rights of Older Persons’. In a recent article in the Human Rights Law Review, entitled ‘The Human […]

  • Maris Burbergs

Recognizing the right to conscientious objection – Part II – coherence of human rights

July 27, 2011

An interaction can be observed regarding the recognition of the right to conscientious objection in three international human rights systems– the UN, European and Inter-American. 

  • Maris Burbergs

Recognizing the right to conscientious objection – Part I – correcting a mistake

July 20, 2011

In the Grand Chamber judgment in the case of Bayatyan v. Armenia the Court recognized a right to conscientious objection under Article 9. The first step in doing so was to correct a mistake started by the European Commission of Human Rights (Commission) regarding the interpretation of Article 9 in conjunction with Article 4.

  • Saïla Ouald Chaib

Immigration, education and integration. A cloudy combination. (Anatoliy Ponomaryov and Vitaliy Ponomaryov v. Bulgaria)

July 07, 2011

Immigration was a challenge in the past, is still a challenge now and will probably remain a challenge in the future for policy makers as well as for judges. Especially when it comes to public services for individuals staying irregularly in a country, this issue becomes more difficult. Can the regular or irregular stay of […]

  • Guest Blogger

Schmitz v. Germany and Mork v. Germany: Applause for the German Constitutional Court—Does ‘Dialogue’ Solve it All?

June 22, 2011

This guest post was written by Ingrid Leijten who works as a Ph.D. fellow and teaching assistant at the Leiden University Faculty of Law, Department of Constitutional and Administrative Law. Her main research interest lies in the development of the ECHR and the practice of the ECtHR in relation to the Member States’ policymaking.   […]

  • Maris Burbergs

Khodorkovskiy in a cage

June 20, 2011

In the case of Khodorkovskiy v. Russia the Court reaffirmed that placing a person in a cage during a trial if the person is not predisposed to violence or there are no serious security threats, is degrading and violates Article 3. The Court noted that the practice of placing a criminal defendant in a sort […]

  • Weichie

Khodorkovskiy v. Russia: European Court of Human Rights Rules “No Proof of Political Trial”

June 16, 2011

A few weeks ago the European Court of Human Rights delivered its judgment in the high profile case of Khodorkovskiy v. Russia. Mr. Khodorkovskiy was, as I assume most readers are aware, until recently one of the richest persons in Russia and the major shareholder in one of Russia’s formerly largest oil companies (Yukos). He […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Live from Strasbourg: the hearing of Konstantin Markin v. Russia

June 08, 2011

Together with Lourdes and Stijn, I’ve just attended the Grand Chamber hearing in the case of Konstantin Markin v. Russia. We’ve blogged about this case here and here. Just to refresh your memory: the case concerns a military serviceman, Konstantin Markin, who was divorced from his wife and who had custody of their three young […]

  • Guest Blogger

R.R. v. Poland: health rights under Art. 8 ECHR

June 02, 2011

By Laurens Lavrysen* As Alexandra correctly noted in her post, R.R. v. Poland is a very interesting judgment. The focus of this post will lie on the general health rights implications of this judgment, which exceed the specific context of reproductive health. In the case of Tysiąc v. Poland (ECtHR 20 March 2007) the Court […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

R.R. v. Poland: of reproductive health, abortion and degrading treatment

May 31, 2011

The Court has released an important judgment in the area of reproductive health, R.R. v. Poland.  It is also a very interesting judgment, as it raises a complex set of issues connected to different fields of law. Our team had a lively debate about this case yesterday. It became clear that there are various ways […]

  • Guest Blogger

Absence of prior-notification requirement does not violate Article 8: Mosley v UK

May 11, 2011

Guest post by Rónán Ó Fathaigh, PhD candidate at Ghent University. For more information on Rónán, find him here. This week the Fourth Section of the European Court delivered its much anticipated judgment in Mosley v. the United Kingdom, which unanimously held that the absence of a prior-notification requirement on newspapers to give advance notice […]

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