Türkei-Referendum vor dem EGMR: Warum der Gang nach Straßburg diesmal wohl nicht helfen wird

Nachdem die türkische Wahlkommission den Antrag einiger Oppositionsparteien auf Annullierung des Verfassungsreferendums vom 16. April verworfen hat, erwägt die oppositionelle CHP Medienberichten zufolge den Gang nach Straßburg. Dem halten türkische Spitzenpolitiker entgegen, der EGMR sei hierfür nicht zuständig. Was ist hiervon zu halten?

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Stopping forced sterilisation is not enough – the limitations of the recent ECHR judgement on trans rights

The recent ruling of the European Court of Human Rights in A.P., Garçon and Nicot v. France constitutes an important decision for trans rights in many ways. The ECtHR determined that France’s requirement of sterilisation, applying to persons wishing to legally change their names and gender on their birth certificate to reflect their gender identity, is a violation of the right to privacy under Article 8 of the European Convention of Human Rights.

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Money Makes the Court Go Round: The Russian Constitutional Court’s Yukos Judgment

On 19 December 2017 the Russian Constitutional Court (RCC) ruled that payment of just satisfaction in the Yukos case was contrary to the Russian Constitution. It is the first time the apex court of a Council of Europe member state concluded that it should not pay just satisfaction. This blog post provides the background of the case, sums up the reasoning of the RCC and assesses the implications of its judgment of 19 December 2017.

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Sklavenhalter auf Europa-Urlaub: Nicht unser Problem?

Am Dienstag, überlagert vom NPD-Urteil, kam eine Kammerentscheidung des EGMR in Straßburg, die mehr Aufmerksamkeit verdient hätte. Es geht darin um eine Familie aus Dubai, die drei filipinische Frauen wie Haussklavinnen hielt.

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Is there Hope for the Right to Hope?

The European Court of Human Rights has overturned its former position that convicts sentenced to life in prison enjoy a "right to hope" to be eventually released. Arguably, in this case we have an instance of interpretation of evolution which lowers rather than heightens human rights protection. In the current climate when there is a growing political appetite to curtail human rights, a Court interpretation towards change in this direction without good reasons may create a dangerous precedent for further reduction of basic human rights guarantees.

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Der Burkini als Technological Fix

Während in ersten öffentlichen Bädern in Deutschland und der Schweiz Burkinis verboten worden sind, befand der Europäische Gerichtshof für Menschenrechte am 10. Januar 2017, dass der Burkini ein Mittel sein kann, die Teilnahme muslimischer Kinder am koedukativen Schwimmunterricht zu ermöglichen. Der schonende Interessenausgleich, der so erreicht werden konnte, war nur durch diesen Schwimmanzug, der den Charakter eines technischen Konfliktlösungsmittels annimmt, denkbar. Solche technological fixes, die praktische Konkordanz zulassen, stehen auch in anderen Fällen zur Verfügung.

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Collective Expulsion and the Khlaifia Case: Two Steps Forward, One Step Back

The European Convention on Human Rights forbids member states to expulse foreign citizens collectively. Does this mean that they have to conduct individual interviews with refugees before they send them back? Last year, a chamber of the ECtHR, in a case concerning Tunisians landed in Lampedusa in 2011, had concluded that it does. Now, the Great Chamber has reviewed this decision, considerably narrowing the scope of the collective expulsion ban.

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Mercan v. Turkey: Waiting for the Last Word of the Turkish Constitutional Court

For the time being, the fallout of the attempted coup d’ètat of July 15th 2016 in Turkey will not reach Strasbourg. Victims of alleged human rights violations first have to exhaust domestic remedies before they can apply to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). This is the result of Mercan v. Turkey, the first of more than 3000 applications regarding alleged violations after the attempted coup and the declaration of a state of emergency. The Strasbourg court views the Turkish Constitutional Court (TCC) not as per se incapable of adjudicating in these cases in an effective way. If the TCC can live up to these expectations remains to be seen.

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Can private undertakings hide behind “religious neutrality”?

Is the pursuit of religious neutrality an acceptable aim for public and private organisations alike, on the basis of which they may prohibit their employees from wearing religious signs or apparel whilst at work? In two pending cases before the CJEU, the Advocates General seem to arrive at opposite conclusions on this point. To solve this puzzle, I think it is crucial to see that there are two radically different reasons why a private-sector company may wish to adopt an identity of religious neutrality, which reflect two distinct types of interest a company may have in religious neutrality: a business interest and an interest as a member of society.

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Gemeindemitglied wider Willen: Leipzig beugt sich Karlsruhe und zeigt in Richtung Straßburg

In Deutschland kann man in eine Religionsgemeinschaft eingemeindet werden, der man niemals beitreten wollte. Glaubensfreiheit hin oder her – das geht. So heute das Bundesverwaltungsgericht in einem Urteil, das einen der sonderbarsten religionsverfassungsrechtlichen Streitigkeiten seit langem vorläufig beendet und gleichzeitig die Treue zum Bundesverfassungsgericht vor die eigenen Überzeugungen zur Auslegung der Europäischen Menschenrechtskonvention stellt.

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