Strasbourg’s Interim Measures Under Fire: Does the Rising Number of State Incompliances with Interim Measures Pose a Threat to the European Court of Human Rights?
EUROPEAN YEARBOOK ON HUMAN RIGHTS, Vol. 11, 2011
29 Pages Posted: 15 Jul 2011
Date Written: March 1, 2011
Being a daily working tool for the European Court of Human Rights to prevent irreparable damage to persons in a situation of extreme gravity and urgency, and thus to potential victims of violations of a right or freedom under the European Convention, ‘interim measures’ have over time acquired a growing importance in the Court’s case-law. Indeed, currently interim measures play a key role in many cases that are brought before to Strasbourg. Nonetheless, States, when faced with such measures requiring them to act, sometimes refuse to abide by them. This contribution aims to give an overview of recent State incompliances. It is argued that their number, both with regard to terrorism-related and non-terrorism-related cases is steadily growing, as is the number of perpetrators, not only among the ‘new’ Member States, but also among the ‘older’ Member States and even the ‘founding fathers’ of the Council of Europe, and that this can have a negative effect on the supervisory system as a whole. Some initiatives can, however, be taken by the European Court itself and the Committee of Ministers to improve and streamline the procedure with regard to interim measures, whereby all actors in the dispute may benefit.
Keywords: ECHR, European Court of Human Rights, Rule 39, interim measures, incompliance
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