Thursday 31 March 2011

London Conference on EU Accession to ECHR

The European Institute of University College London is organising a conference on 20 May 2011 entitled "Who will be the ultimate guardian of human rights in Europe? Implications of the European Union’s Accession to the European Convention on Human Rights". This is the information provided by the organisers:

The aim of this one day conference is to address the ever-topical question of the ultimate guarantor of human rights in the EU: the Union’s own court (the European Court of Justice), the European Court of Human Rights or national constitutional courts?

Given the envisaged accession of the European Union to the European Convention on Human Rights, there is ample reason for re-visiting this question: the accession might completely change the landscape of human rights protection in Europe.

The legal background is as follows: Article 6 (2) of the Treaty on European Union puts the EU under an obligation to accede to the ECHR. With the entry into force of Protocol No. 14 to the ECHR, an accession has now become possible. Negotiations between the EU and the Council of Europe promptly started in July 2010 and are expected to be completed by June 2011.

The conference is to be held as a one day event on Friday, 20 May 2011 in the Faculty of Laws, University College London. Its aim is to bring together judges, officials, politicians, practitioners and academics, who will discuss the outcome of the accession negotiations so far, highlight potential problems (and proposals to resolve them) and consider the potential impact of an accession on the legal orders of the Union and the Member States. It is hoped that the outcome of the conference will lead to new insights about the future of human rights protection in Europe. The conference will be rounded up with a discussion panel co-organised and hosted by the German Embassy.