ECHR schedules hearing on Crimea case for Nov. 8

22 March, 05:18 PM
The ECHR will hold a hearing on Ukraine's claim against Russia regarding Crimea on November 8 (Photo:European Court of Human Rights/Facebook)

The ECHR will hold a hearing on Ukraine's claim against Russia regarding Crimea on November 8 (Photo:European Court of Human Rights/Facebook)

The European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) has decided on further procedural steps in the case of Ukraine v. Russia, having scheduled a hearing for Nov. 8, 2023, the court said in a press release on March 22.

“After completion of the written procedure, the President of the Court has informed the parties that it would serve the interests of the proper administration of justice that the Court hold a hearing on the admissibility and merits in the case, and has provisionally scheduled this to be held on Nov. 8, 2023,” the ECHR said.

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“In that hearing the Court will examine the merits of the complaints already declared admissible and will examine the admissibility and merits of the 'political prisoners’' case (no. 38334/18) and the transfers of 'convicts' complaint under Article 8 of the Convention (raised in No. 20958/14).”

Ukraine filed a complaint against Russia with the European Court of Human Rights in March 2014, shortly after the occupation of Crimea. In its complaint, Ukraine asks the court to consider numerous violations of the European Convention on Human Rights by Russia in Crimea.

Ukraine’s position is that Russia is responsible for observing human rights in occupied Crimea since it has been occupying that territory since Feb. 27, 2014.

To support the accusations against Russia, Ukraine collected data on the deployment of the Russian army in Crimea and evidence of human rights violations, which includes testimony from dozens of witnesses.

In August 2015, Ukraine filed a second lawsuit against Russia, also regarding Crimea.

In 2018, the ECHR combined both lawsuits into one and transferred the proceedings to the ECHR’s Grand Chamber, which considers exceptional international cases and whose verdicts cannot be appealed.

Russia denies the ECHR’s jurisdiction in considering Ukraine’s lawsuit, claiming that it is allegedly political rather than legal, so it makes no sense to analyze the evidence of human rights violations.

In its decision of Dec. 16, 2020, the ECHR declared the application partly admissible, finding that the admissible complaints did fall within the “jurisdiction” of Russia on the basis of the effective control that it has exercised over Crimea since Feb. 27, 2014.

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