3 January 2005
Member States’ duty to co-operate with the European Court of Human Rights
Motion for a resolution
presented by Mr Pourgourides and others
This motion has not been discussed in the Assembly and commits only the members who have signed it
1. The right of individual application is a cornerstone of the system of the protection of human rights under the European Convention on Human Rights. In addition to the reforms recently undertaken in Protocol No. 14, whose effectiveness will need to be evaluated at a later stage, the right of individual petition depends on the Member States’ unconditional co-operation with the Court during all stages of the procedure, and on their compliance with the obligation not to hinder the effective exercise of that right, whether before an application reaches the Court or when it is pending.
2. The Assembly is deeply concerned about the threats to the right of individual petition stemming from the failure of some member States to protect individual applicants from reprisals and other obstacles to the effective exercise of that right.
3. The Assembly considers the physical protection of applicants to the Court and of their families and the vigorous investigation and punishment of any crimes committed against them to be a fundamental duty of all member States.
4. It is therefore outraged that in a number of cases, applicants to the European Court of Human Rights, or members of their families, have become victims of serious crimes such as murder, enforced disappearance, or threats of such crimes, which have as yet remained unelucidated.
5. Beyond the physical protection of applicants, the duty of Member States to co-operate with the Court, even before the Court’s admissibility decision, includes the duty to reply within a reasonable time to the Court’s requests for information aimed at clarifying the factual situation and ensuring that visa procedures do not hinder taking of evidence by the Court in situ.
6. The Assembly urges the Council of Europe’s Member States, as States Parties to the European Convention on Human Rights, to:
i. fulfil their duty to cooperate with the European Court of Human Rights in order to give full effect to the right of every person to raise alleged violations of his or her rights before the Court ;
ii. abstain from any action that would thwart the purpose of the individual petition irreparably. In this context, the Assembly stresses the importance of the interim measures pronounced by the Court.Human Rights.
Signed (see overleaf)
POURGOURIDES, Christos, Cyprus, EPP/CD
ALEURAS, Athanasios, Greece, SOC
ARABADJIEV, Alexander, Bulgaria, SOC
BARTUMEU CASSANY, Jaume, Andorra, SOC
CILEVIČS, Boriss, Latvia, SOC
DENDIAS, Nikolaos, Greece, EPP/CD
ERR, Lydie, Luxembourg, SOC
FICO, Robert, Slovakia, SOC
HOLOVATY, Serhiy, Ukraine, LDR
LLOYD, Tony, United Kingdom, SOC
MANZELLA, Andrea, Italy, SOC
McNAMARA, Kevin, United Kingdom, SOC
SHARANDIN, Yuri, Russia, EDG
1 SOC: Socialist Group
EPP/CD: Group of the European People’s Party
LDR : Liberal, Democratic and Reformers’ Group
EDG: European Democratic Group
UEL: Group of the Unified European Left
NR: not registered in a group