Committee suggests streamlined procedure for electing judges of the Strasbourg Court

<p style="text-align: justify;">A PACE committee has proposed further improvements to the procedure the Assembly uses to elect judges to the European Court of Human Rights &ndash; including streamlining the procedure for rejecting lists of candidates which do not meet the required standards.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">The Committee on the Election of Judges to the European Court of Human Rights, in a draft resolution based on a report by Boriss Cilevics (Latvia, SOC), said it should be possible for the committee to propose to the Assembly the rejection of lists of candidates by a simple majority of its members present, rather than a two-thirds majority as is the case now.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">The committee said it should have the power to propose the rejection of lists of candidates when:</p> <ul> <li>not all of the candidates on a given list fulfil all the conditions laid down in the Convention concerning the qualifications of judges;</li> </ul> <ul> <li>the procedure used at national level to select the three candidates does not fulfil &ldquo;minimum requirements of fairness and transparency&rdquo;;</li> </ul> <ul> <li>the Council of Europe&rsquo;s <a href="">Advisory Panel of Experts</a>, set up to assist governments with their selection of candidates, has not been duly consulted.</li> </ul> <p style="text-align: justify;">Under the Convention, judges must be &ldquo;of high moral character and possess the qualifications required for appointment to high judicial office or be jurisconsults of recognised competence&rdquo;.</p> <p style="text-align: justify;">The Assembly elects one of three candidates put forward by governments. It has tasked the committee with interviewing all candidates, assessing their CVs and making recommendations before it votes.</p>