European Court of Human Rights

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Seizing Russia’s Frozen Assets: Quis iudicabit?

As 2024 begins, negotiations on further financial assistance to Ukraine have stalled on both sides of the Atlantic. As a consequence, Western policymakers now increasingly consider confiscating Russia’s frozen assets as a possibility to circumvent the political deadlocks that are blocking further financial aid. Russia, on its part, has already threatened Ukraine’s supporters with retaliation in kind if they should proceed to confiscate its assets. But are there other options for Russia to fight a confiscation of its foreign assets? Could it bring a case before an international court or tribunal, maybe even before the International Court of Justice (ICJ)? The Russian government already indicated a willingness to take legal action against the freeze imposed on its assets. While such claims haven’t materialized yet, the West proceeding from freezing to seizing might well push Russia over the edge and give rise to litigation or arbitration over the fate of the approximately $350 billion in Russian state-owned…

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How to Maneuver Around Acknowledging the Right to Access Abortion: Some Thoughts on the ECtHR’s judgment in M.L. v Poland

On 14 December 2023, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR, Court) issued its much-awaited judgment in M.L. v Poland, i.e. in one of the approximately 1000 applications submitted before it regarding the Polish restrictive abortion policy. The application concerned the alleged violation of the applicant’s rights under the European Convention on Human Rights…

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The Mariupol Test: Analysing the Briefs of Third States Intervening in Ukraine and the Netherlands v. Russia

The interstate case of Ukraine and the Netherlands v. Russia is currently pending on its merits before the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights. It is one of the most complex and politically momentous cases ever to be heard by the Court. Russia is no longer participating in the proceedings, and will not comply with…

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Challenges in Executing Judgments of the European Court of Human Rights: the Case of the Roma

What does it mean for a judgment of the European Court of Human Rights to be “executed”?   In European Convention parlance, “execution” is a term that carries within it a great deal of potential, if unexplained, meaning. Article 46 of the Convention provides that “The High Contracting Parties undertake to abide” –…

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Life & Death, an Unstable Scale: The European Court of Human Rights Approach to Euthanasia in Mortier v. Belgium

On 4 October 2022, the European Court of Human Rights (“ECtHR”) issued a Chamber judgment in the case of Mortier v. Belgium. This landmark ruling is the first-ever ruling of the ECtHR on the compliance of euthanasia, once performed, with the rights protected under the European Convention of Human Rights (“ECHR”). Additionally,…

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