Strasbourg Steps in

In recent months, the European Court of Human Rights has communicated to the Government of the Republic of Poland several important cases concerning changes in the judiciary. Potential Strasbourg judgements may be important in containing further undermining of the independence of the judiciary and may complement measures taken at the European Union level.

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Expelled from Humanity

The decision of the European Court of Human Rights in M.N. and Others v. Belgium will undoubtedly further propel the debate on the scope of extraterritorial state jurisdiction. More importantly, however, it reveals the necessity of addressing the systemic exclusion of refugees from the international legal order.

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Covid-19 and Derogations Before the European Court of Human Rights

Many argue that derogations, permitted under many human rights instruments, provide a useful framework for assessing whether any human rights infringements that arise from emergency provisions adopted in response to Covid-19 are justified. Drawing on jurisprudence from the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR or the Court) in relation to Northern Ireland, this post argues that it is likely that the vast majority of cases exploring derogation will be found in a government’s failure.

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Kolevi: Bulgaria’s 10-Year Cat-and-Mouse Game with the Council of Europe and the Venice Commission

A cat-and-mouse game perfectly describes Bulgaria’s stubborn refusal to comply with Kolevi v Bulgaria, which requires a reform of Bulgaria’s Prosecutor’s Office, and it has been going on for a decade. The latest trick pulled out of the bag is quite original – Bulgaria’s government essentially asked Bulgaria’s Constitutional Court to clarify if some of the concerns raised by the Venice Commission were reasonable, and this court deemed the question admissible.

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Why the Turkish Constitutional Court’s Wikipedia Decision is No Reason to Celebrate

The Turkish Constitutional Court (TCC) recently lifted the ban on Wikipedia and a surge of, in my view, unwarranted optimism has now sprung out of nowhere both among international and Turkish circles following the case closely. I fail to share this optimism. By all means, the lifting of the ban on Wikipedia is something to be happy about. But the timing and content of the TCC’s decision, when especially read through the political context in which it was handed down, do not give much reason to celebrate.

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Time for Strasbourg to Open its Doors to Turkey’s Purged Public Servants

A report by the Turkey Human Rights Litigation Support Project (TLSP) provides fresh evidence that the Commission formed in 2017 to examine the mass dismissals of public servants and liquidation of media outlets and other organisations functions arbitrarily and without transparency. Together with concerns about judicial review by administrative courts and the Constitutional Court, the report casts serious doubt on whether victims of abuses committed under emergency laws have access to an effective domestic remedy – a finding with implications for the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) as it considers the long queue of Turkish applications before it.

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Producing Legal History

Iustitia dilata est iustitia negata is a famous legal maxim meaning that “justice delayed is justice denied”. It goes without saying that it represents a universal truth. This truth is particularly relevant to the European Court of Human Rights which – on average – takes several years to deliver a judgment.

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Independent Journalism v. Political Courts: The Cumhuriyet Trial in Turkey and Strasbourg

Shortly after Turkey’s ruling AK party lost control of metropolitan cities in the local elections of April 2019, a crucial verdict of the regional appellate court in a major case of journalism was brought forth in the national judicial network system. This case is known as the Cumhuriyet trial. Through silence, delay, or selective responsiveness, not only the Turkish Constitutional Court but also the European Court of Human Rights are playing their part in the ongoing demise of Turkey’s freedom of the press.

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