ENTRY INTO FORCE of the European Convention on Human Rights
20 June 1994
Number of implemented cases*
After the fall of communism in Romania, laws were passed giving people the right to claim back property nationalised by the old regime. Tens of thousands of people made such claims, but a huge number faced delays and failures to deal with their applications. The European court ruled that the system must be reformed – leading to a new law which made the restitution system more effective.
Bruised and beaten, Angelica Bălșan suffered eight assaults from her husband and sustained injuries that required up to ten days of medical care. She made many complaints to the authorities, but they took no proper steps to protect her. The European court held that Ms Bălșan had been inadequately protected against the abuse – leading to ongoing reforms to combat domestic violence in Romania.
All of the Roma inhabitants of a village had their houses burnt down by other locals. The authorities were warned, but refused to intervene. After the attack, the authorities did not investigate properly and the courts failed to give the victims a fair trial. Their application to Strasbourg led to compensation and local programmes to combat discrimination and exclusion.
Ionel Dălban was a Romanian journalist and ran a local weekly magazine, Cronica Romaşcană. He was convicted and given a prison sentence for writing about an alleged fraud by public figures. The Strasbourg court ruled that the conviction had violated his right to freedom of expression. The case triggered reforms to free speech protections in Romania.
"Totally insufficient" investigation of a suspicious death and the reform of criminal investigations
Tatiana Trufin’s brother was killed in suspicious circumstances. Despite evidence of an attack, the authorities did very little to investigate for the next 12 years. The Strasbourg court ruled that their efforts had been totally insufficient. This influenced reforms to improve the effectiveness of criminal investigations in Romania.
* This figure includes implemented judgments of the European Court of Human Rights and implemented friendly settlements in litigation before the court. The statistics will be updated annually, at the beginning of each calendar year. Source: the database of the Department for the Execution of Judgments of the ECHR, HUDOC-EXEC.