Longer-term future of the ECHR System
At the end of work conducted during biennium 2014-2015 by the Committee of Experts on the Reform of the Court (DH-GDR) and its Drafting Group “F” (GT-GDR-F), the Steering Committee for Human Rights (CDDH) adopted its report on the longer-term future of the European Convention on Human Rights, presenting its opinions and proposals in response to paragraphs 35c to 35f of the Brighton Declaration on the future of the European Court of Human Rights (20 April 2012).
Four overarching areas were considered as crucial for the longer-term effectiveness and viability of the Convention System:
- National implementation of the Convention;
- The authority of the Court;
- The execution of judgments and its supervision;
- The place of the Convention in the European and International legal order.
The challenges inherent in each of these fields were identified, along with the responses to be given by all actors in the Convention System.
At their 1252nd meeting, the Ministers’ Deputies welcomed the report of the CDDH on the longer-term future of the System of the European Convention on Human Rights, took note of the Court’s comments on the report, and agreed on its follow-up.
Concerning the work entrusted to the CDDH, the Deputies agreed on the following:
“deemed it essential that the judges of the Court enjoy the highest authority in national and international law and to this end instructed the CDDH to examine, while securing the participation of the Court and all other relevant actors concerned, the whole selection and election process, including all factors that might discourage possible candidates from applying, in the light of conclusion § 203 i) and the relevant paragraphs of the report;”
“instructed the CDDH to carry out a detailed analysis of all questions relating to the place of the Convention in the European and international legal order and on the medium-term and longer-term prospects, in the light of the relevant paragraphs of the report (conclusion § 203 iii).”
Preparatory work relating to the first analysis were entrusted to the Drafting Group I on the follow-up to the CDDH report on the longer-term future of the System of the Convention (DH-SYSC-I).
Preparatory work relating to the second analysis were entrusted to the Drafting Group II on the follow-up to the CDDH report on the longer-term future of the System of the Convention (DH-SYSC-II).
"In these turbulent and fragmented times, the European Convention on Human Rights is an anchor. As a basis for joint action be tween 47 member States, it empowers European governments to act together in order to combat shared threats to Europe’s stability, while still safeguarding liberty. Where politics stalls or falters, the Convention can move us forward, keeping the doors of diplomacy open even when relations are fraught. Not only does it provide a common ground between nations, based on agreed laws and shared values: by setting out the fundamental freedoms all in Europe must respect, the Convention is a source of cohesion in our increasingly dive rse societies, too."
Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe