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December 2004

The Legal Order of the Russian Federation and the Council of Europe Standards*


This article surveys the decisions of the European Court of Human Rights on the merits of cases involving the Russian Federation, as well as decisions on admissibility of cases for which a decision is pending, during the entire period during which Russia has submitted to the Courtís jurisdiction.  The cases are grouped by the Articles of the European Convention on Human Rights claimed to have been violated: the right to a fair and speedy trial; the right to finality of judgments, freedom from degrading treatment, the right to liberty; and right to respect for private life. An analysis of 12 judgments and over 50 preliminary decisions on admissibility indicates a fundamental misunderstanding by the Russian Federation of its obligation to reform its judicial system and provide for the domestic protection of human rights. The article concludes that the Russian Federationís laissez-faire attitude towards Human Rights reform resulting in its continued failure to provide fair and speedy justice, protect political and property rights, and fairly resolve ethnic and national conflicts, will not be remedied unless Russia actively internalises the decisions of the Court.

Read the article (PDF file 253 kb) >>>

* The authors are Anton Burkov, Douglas Kramer, Anna Demeneva, and Ludmila Churkina. the editors are Anton Burkov, Douglas Kramer, and Judith Ahrens. Anton Burkov, Anna Demeneva, and Ludmila Churkina are legal officers with the Urals Centre for Constitutional and International Human Rights Protection of the NGO Sutyajnik (Yekaterinburg, Russia); Contacts: t./f.:+7-343-355-56-31; burkov@sutyajnik.ru; www.sutyajnik.ru. Mr Kramer and Dr Ahrens are working at the Urals Center as volunteers from the International Senior Lawyers Project (New York, USA), www.islp.org.


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