Reform of the European Court of Human Rights

www.coe.int/reformECHR

OPEN CALL FOR CONTRIBUTIONS

Further information

 

About the reform

History of the reform
Secretariat

 

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Plenary bodies

Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH)

Committee of Experts on the Reform of the Court (DH-GDR)
 

Drafting Groups on the Reform of the Court

GT-GDR-A

GT-GDR-B

GT-GDR-C

GT-GDR-D

GT-GDR-E
GT-GDR-F
GT-GDR-G

 

High level Conferences

Brighton, 18-20/04/2012

Declaration
Proceedings
Background documents

Izmir, 26-27/04/2011

Declaration
Proceedings
Background documents

Interlaken, 18-19/02/2010

Declaration
Proceedings
Preparatory contributions
Background documents

Committee of experts on the reform of the Court (DH-GDR)1

Set up by the Committee of Ministers under Article 17 of the Statute of the Council of Europe and in accordance with Resolution CM/Res(2011)24 on intergovernmental committees and subordinate bodies, their terms of reference and working methods
Type of committee: Subordinate body
Terms of reference valid from: 1 January 2014 until 31 December 2015

Main tasks

Under the supervision of the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH), the DH-GDR will conduct the intergovernmental work intended to contribute to the protection of human rights by improving the effectiveness of the control mechanism of the European Convention on Human Rights and the implementation of the Convention at national level, as assigned by the Committee of Ministers to the Steering Committee as an important part of the follow-up to the Brighton Declaration.

Pillar/Sector/Programme

Pillar: Human Rights
Sector:
Ensuring Protection of Human Rights
Programme:
Enhancing the Effectiveness of the ECHR System at national and European level

Expected results

    (i) A draft report is submitted to the Committee of Ministers containing opinions and possible proposals concerning the longer-term future of the Convention system and the Court, in accordance with paragraphs 35(c)-(f) of the Brighton Declaration (deadline: 15 March 2015).
    (ii) A draft report is submitted to the Committee of Ministers containing conclusions and possible proposals for action concerning the procedure for the amendment of the Rules of Court and the possible ‘upgrading’ to the Convention of certain provisions of the Rules of Court (deadline: 31 December 2014).
    (iii) Any further results expected on the basis of decisions that may be taken by the Committee of Ministers following submission of the above two reports.
    (iv) Ensure that information concerning the implementation of the Convention and execution of the Court’s judgements is exchanged regularly ‒ in order to assist member States in developing their domestic capacities and facilitate their access to relevant information (compare i.a. paragraph 29 (a) i) of the Brighton Declaration).
    (v) Proposals are submitted to the Committee of Ministers for the possible updating and development of the following Committee of Ministers’ instruments (deadline: 31 December 2015):

- Recommendation Rec(2004)4 on the Convention in university education and professional training, along with the development of guidelines on good practice in respect of human rights training for legal professionals.
- Recommendation CM/Rec(2010)3 on effective measures for excessive length of proceedings and its accompanying Guide to Good Practice.
Activities to this end would depend on the availability of resources in the light of possible decisions concerning (iii) above, the implementation of which would have priority.

Composition

Members:

Governments of member States are invited to designate one or more representatives of the highest possible rank in the field of human rights.
The Council of Europe will bear the travel and subsistence expenses of one representative from each member state (two in the case of the State whose representative has been elected Chair).
Each member of the committee shall have one vote. Where a government designates more than one member, only one of them is entitled to take part in the voting.

Participants:

The following may send representatives, without the right to vote and at the charge of their corresponding administrative budgets:
- Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe;
- Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe;
- European Court of Human Rights;
- Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights;
- Conference of INGOs of the Council of Europe;
- HELP Network Consultative Board;
- committees or other bodies of the Council of Europe engaged in related work, as appropriate.
The following may send representatives, without the right to vote and without defrayal of expenses:
- European Union (one or more representatives, including, as appropriate, the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights (FRA));
- Observer States to the Council of Europe: Canada, Holy See, Japan, Mexico, United States of America;
- representatives of other international organisations (Organisation for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) / Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees).

Observers:

The following may send representatives, without the right to vote and without defrayal of expenses:
- Belarus;
- Non-governmental organisations (Amnesty International, International Commission of Jurists (ICJ), International Federation of Human Rights (FIDH), European Roma and Travellers Forum), as well as the European Network of National Human Rights Institutions.

Working methods

Plenary meetings

48 members, 2 meetings in 2014, 3 days
48 members, 2 meetings in 2015, 3 days
The Committee will also appoint a Gender Equality Rapporteur from amongst its members.
The rules of procedure of the Committee are governed by Resolution CM/Res(2011)24 on intergovernmental committees and subordinate bodies, their terms of reference and working methods.

1 Revised Terms of Reference as distributed in document DD(2013)983.