Friday 16 January 2009

Court Starts Addressing Georgian-Russian Conflict

The Court issued a press release today which indicates that it has started to deal with the delicate issue of claims arising from last summer's Georgian-Russian war. This concerns individual complaints, not the inter-state complaint. Here is the full text:

A Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights has recently examined seven applications against Georgia concerning hostilities which broke out in South Ossetia at the beginning of August 2008. The applications were lodged by six inhabitants of South Ossetia and a member of the Russian Armed Forces attached to the peace keeping corps in Tskhinvali, South Ossetia .

The cases mainly concern an alleged violation of the applicants’ or their close relatives’ right to life, inhuman or degrading treatment, interference with the right to respect for private and family life and home, damage to property or its destruction, absence of an effective domestic remedy and discrimination on the ground of ethnic origin/nationality. The applicants rely on Article 2 (right to life), Article 3 (prohibition of inhuman or degrading treatment), Article 8 (right to respect for private and family life), Article 13 (right to an effective remedy) and Article 14 (prohibition of discrimination) of the European Convention on Human Rights and Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 (protection of property) to the Convention.

The Chamber decided to give priority to the applications under Rule 41 of the Rules of Court and to communicate them to the Georgian Government under Rule 54 § 2 (b).

These applications belong to a group of more than 3,300 cases with a similar factual background which have been lodged with the Court since August 2008.