Thursday 24 July 2008

Judicial Ethics

Article 21 ECHR provides that the Court's judges shall be of high moral character, qualified, impartial and independent. These criteria have been further specified in the Rules of Court. Apparently, this was not sufficient - or at least not sufficiently known to the general public. Thus, the Court drew up a new and very short public document last month: a Resolution on Judicial Ethics (adopted by the Court on 23 June 2008). The document outlines the judges duties and responsibilities in relation to e.g. other functions, conflicts of interests, and favours and advantages. Although the text offers little more than one could reasonably infer from the Convention and Rules of Court, it is a clear and handy overview of a judge's responsibilities. They provide the underlying principles of the criteria contained in the Convention. Hopefully it will serve its purpose.