European Court of Human Rights

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EJIL: The Podcast! Episode 12 – “No Licence to Kill”

In this episode, Marko Milanovic, Philippa Webb and I discuss the legal issues that arise from targeted killings conducted by states outside their territory. We begin with a discussion of the recent blockbuster judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in the case concerning Alexander Litvinenko (Carter v. Russia, no. 20914/07, 21 September 2021). In that decision, a Chamber of the Court found Russia responsible for violating the right to life of Litvinenko, the former Russian spy who was poisoned with radioactive polonium in London in 2006. We talk about how the Court dealt with the attribution of the killing to Russia and then explore the extraterritorial application of human rights treaties obligations - a question on which many courts and treaty bodies have given inconsistent answers. The podcast then moves on to the legal issues that would arise if the courts of the…

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European Court Finds Russia Assassinated Alexander Litvinenko

On Tuesday a Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights found Russia responsible for violating the right to life of Alexander Litvinenko, the former Russian spy poisoned with radioactive polonium in London in 2006 (Carter v. Russia, no. 20914/07, 21 September 2021). The Court found Article 2 ECHR to have been violated in both its substantive…

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The Proceedings Flow While Water Does Not: Russia’s Claims Concerning the North Crimean Canal in Strasbourg

On 23 July, Russia brought an interstate complaint against Ukraine to the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). After endlessly being a respondent in cases arising out of alleged control over the territories of other states, the empire decided to strike back. Ukraine for the first time found itself as a defensive side in its…

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Russia Files Interstate Complaint Against Ukraine in Strasbourg

This, I think, is a first – after many years of being sued by other states (most notably Ukraine and Georgia) before the European Court of Human Rights and other international courts and tribunals, Russia has struck back last week by filing an interstate application of its own against Ukraine (no. 36958/21). Here’s an excerpt from the Court’s…

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The (Gay) Elephant in the Room: Is there a Positive Obligation to Legally Recognise Same-Sex Unions after Fedotova v. Russia?

On the 13th of July, the European Court of Human Rights (Third Section) decided the case Fedotova v. Russia, nos. 40792/10 etc, holding that the Russian State violated Art. 8 ECHR for not having provided same-sex couples with the opportunity to have their relationships formally acknowledged in form of a marriage, or in any other form. The judgment, which…

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