Last week, the Council of Europe's Department for the Execution of Judgments of the European Court of Human Rights has published a new thematic factsheet on the reopening of domestic judicial proceedings following judgments of the European Court of Human Rights. Here is a brief description:
'The full, effective and speedy implementation of the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights by the States parties to the Convention makes a major contribution to the achievement of common observance and enforcement of human rights in Europe.
A judgment in which the Court finds a breach imposes on the respondent State a legal obligation to put an end to the breach and make reparation for its consequences in such a way as to restore as far as possible the situation existing before the breach. This is the principle of restitutio in integrum, which has also frequently been applied by the Committee of Ministers. The need to improve the possibilities under national legal systems to ensure restitutio in integrum for the injured party has become increasingly apparent. Although the Convention contains no provision imposing an obligation on States to provide in their national law for the re-examination or reopening of proceedings, the existence of such possibilities has proven to be important, and indeed in some cases the only, means to achieve restitutio in integrum.
The present factsheet presents an overview of the general principles concerning reopening of domestic judicial proceedings, as well examples of the relevant State practice examined by the Committee of Ministers in the context of the execution of the European Court’s judgments concerning various provisions of the Convention.'