The Council of Europe’s Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) has published its conclusions on the implementation of its priority recommendations made in 2019, by Russia and by Latvia.
In its conclusions ECRI expresses its concern about the non-implementation by Russia of the priority recommendations to set up a body independent of the police and prosecution authorities to investigate all complaints against the police, as well as to abolish the legal ban on the provision of information about homosexuality to minors, in line with the 2017 judgment of the European Court of Human Rights in the case Bayev and others v. Russia.
In its conclusions on Latvia, ECRI finds that the country has implemented one recommendation, namely to provide for the automatic recognition of Latvian citizenship for children born to “non-citizens”. However, ECRI considers that measures taken to address hate crimes are insufficient. In particular, community policing does not constitute an acceptable alternative to the creation of a specialised unit within the State Police, as recommended in its 2019 report. Community policing, if implemented effectively, can be a useful measure in addition to the creation of a unit specialised in the handling of racist and homo-/transphobic hate crimes, but not an adequate replacement.
The conclusions published by ECRI concern only the two specific recommendations for each country for which priority follow-up was requested; they do not aim at providing a comprehensive analysis of all developments in the fight against racism and intolerance in Russia and in Latvia. This will be the focus of the next full monitoring reports expected in 2024.
Council of Europe body concerned by the non-implementation by Russia of its priority recommendations on police complaints mechanism and on abolishing the so-called “gay propaganda” legislation