Strasbourg Observers

View posts from: Cases

  • Maris Burbergs

How significant is the ‘significant disadvantage” of the new admissibility criterion (Part II)?

May 09, 2011

It has been claimed[1] and it is also my understanding that human rights protect important aspects of a human life. The views on what are the important aspects may vary. The drafters of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights put in their views; inspired by the rights in the Declaration, the European Convention was composed, […]

  • Maris Burbergs

How significant is the ‘significant disadvantage’ of the new admissibility criterion (Part I)?

May 04, 2011

In its decisions in the cases of Holub v. the Czech Republic and Bratři Zátkové, a.s. v. the Czech Republic the Court has unanimously declared the applications inadmissible. The Court used the new admissibility criterion to determine that.

  • Alexandra Timmer

Saying It Is Doing It (comments on the hearing in the case of Aksu v. Turkey)

April 19, 2011

The famous American feminist legal theorist Catherine MacKinnon argued that pornography is an act of subordination. In Only Words, she notes: “Social inequality is substantially created and enforced – that is, done – through words and images. . .  Elevation and denigration are all accomplished through meaningful symbols and communicative acts in which saying it […]

  • Lourdes Peroni

Lautsi v. Italy: Possible Implications for Minority Religious Symbols

March 31, 2011

What are the implications of the recent landmark judgment in Lautsi for minority religious symbols in state school classrooms? At first sight, the Court seems to adopt a more open approach towards the presence of religious symbols in the school environment. On closer examination, however, this may not necessarily be the case. This post briefly […]

  • Weichie

Lautsi v. Italy: the Argument from Neutrality

March 22, 2011

Lautsi v. Italy was destined to achieve legendary status in the ECtHR’s case law. In fact, it became the stuff of legends long before the Grand Chamber’s judgment came out. Rarely has a judgment of a supranational court put such a spell on people. Rarely has it inspired such passionate comments and speculation even before […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Kiyutin v. Russia: landmark case concerning the human rights of people living with HIV

March 21, 2011

Recently, the Court came down with a judgment that strongly condemns the stigmatization of people living with HIV. Kiyutin v. Russia is, as far as I was able to ascertain, the first case in which the Court rules on the merits of a claim of discrimination on the ground of a person’s HIV-positive status. Straight […]

  • Guest Blogger

Aydin v. Germany or the Strasbourg Court’s faint reasoning in a case of political dissent

March 17, 2011

Today’s guest post was written by Hannes Cannie, PhD candidate at the Human Rights Centre of Ghent University. Further information on Hannes, including a list of his publications, can be found here. In Aydin v. Germany (27 January 2011) the Fifth Section of the Strasbourg Court held with six votes to one that the applicant’s […]

  • Weichie

Mgn Limited v. the United Kingdom: Naomi Campbell v. the Tabloid Press

March 14, 2011

Mgn Limited v. the United Kingdom concerned several articles published in 2001 in the tabloid Mirror (now Daily Mirror), revealing that supermodel Naomi Campbell was attending Narcotics Anonymous (NA) meetings in an attempt to treat her drug addiction. The articles were accompanied by several photographs, including one in which Ms. Campbell was seen standing in […]

  • Guest Blogger

Banning Speech in the Public Space

March 10, 2011

Guest post by Rónán Ó Fathaigh, PhD candidate at Ghent University. For more information on Rónán, find him here. The recent Article 10 judgment in Mouvement Raëlien Suisse v. Switzerland merits some close attention given the important questions of principle which are     arguably involved. The First Section of the European Court found no violation of […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

Gypsy Way of Life “By Birth” or “By Choice”

February 22, 2011

This post is co-authored by Lourdes Peroni and Alexandra Timmer In an inadmissibility decision that might have gone unnoticed by many, the Court has recently ruled in an interesting case, Horie v UK. The case involves a “New Age Traveler” who complained of an impediment on her ability to pursue a nomadic way of life. […]

  • Maris Burbergs

The new powers of single judge formations and committees

February 18, 2011

“The year 2010, which was the sixtieth anniversary of the European Convention on Human Rights, has been an important year for the European Court of Human Rights,” writes the president of the Court, Jean-Paul Costa, in the foreword to the 2010 report.[1] Indeed, Protocol 14 entered into force in June of last year, granting long-awaited […]

  • Lourdes Peroni

M.S.S. v. Belgium and Greece: When is a Group Vulnerable?

February 10, 2011

Any attempt to comment exhaustively on the recent landmark ruling of the Grand Chamber in M.S.S. v Belgium and Greece in one page would be bound to fail. It is an extraordinarily rich judgment. In this post, I therefore limit my comments to one single aspect I find particularly intriguing: the concept of group vulnerability. […]

  • Weichie

Haas v. Switzerland and Assisted Suicide

January 27, 2011

The applicant in Haas v. Switzerland was a 57 years old male who suffered from a bipolar disorder since nearly 20 years. Wishing to commit suicide, Mr. Haas attempted to obtain a lethal substance (sodium pentobarbital) that was only available on medical prescription. To that end, he contacted several psychiatrists, but was not able to […]

  • Guest Blogger

Comparing Abortion to the Holocaust

January 25, 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.   Amid all the discussion regarding the A., B. and C. v. Ireland judgment, it is interesting […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

2010: year of “profound moral views”?

January 20, 2011

2010 was a turbulent year for the European Court of Human Rights. The Court has been under fire both for usurping too much power and for achieving too little. The first type of critique is made by conservatives who recycle the old idea that an international court has no legitimacy to judge the situation on […]

  • Lourdes Peroni

Police Violence against Roma: To Investigate or Not to Investigate, That Was Not a Question

January 17, 2011

When is the duty to investigate possible racist motives triggered in cases of ill-treatment and death in police custody? In one of the latest 2010 judgments (Mižigárová v. Slovakia) dealing with police brutality against a member of an ethnic minority, the Court did not consider that “the authorities had before them information that was sufficient […]

  • Maris Burbergs

The right to choose the circumstances of becoming a parent

January 13, 2011

In the end of last year the Court delivered a judgment in the case of Ternovszky v. Hungary. In this judgment the Court created a new right – the right to choose the circumstances of becoming a parent. I will not focus on the discussion about the safety of the mother and the child that […]

  • Weichie

Contradictions in Defamation Cases

January 06, 2011

Before its holiday break, the European Court of Human Rights released two judgments in defamation cases, Novaya Gazeta V Voronezhe v. Russia and Sofranschi v. Moldova. Both cases concern allegations of abuse and irregularities. While both judgments contain good elements, in my opinion they also reveal faulty reasoning on the part of the Court. Most interestingly, […]

  • Alexandra Timmer

The Court offers protection to those who have a disability and are in detention (Jasinskis v. Latvia & Raffray Taddei v. France)

January 04, 2011

In the most recent round of judgments, squeezed in just before the festive season, are two interesting cases concerning the detention of persons with a disability: Jasinskis v. Latvia and Raffray Taddei v. France. These two cases are exemplary of many others, in which people with a disability are held in detention in appalling conditions. […]

  • Weichie

A., B. and C. v. Ireland: Abortion and the Margin of Appreciation

December 17, 2010

A., B. and C. v. Ireland concerned three Irish applicants who, in their first trimester of pregnancy, had travelled to England to have an abortion because they believed they would not be allowed to have one in Ireland. The Irish Constitution, unlike the European Convention on Human Rights, explicitly extends the right to life to […]

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