MOSCOW, December 8. /TASS/. Russia proceeds from the decisions of its Constitutional Court in the payment of over 1.8 billion euros awarded by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) to former Yukos shareholders as compensation under their complaint, Russia’s Justice Ministry told TASS on Friday.
The Justice Ministry thus commented on media reports that the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe had requested Russia to provide information on the schedule of fulfilling the ECHR’s ruling in the Yukos case.
"With regard to the issues of fulfilling the ruling by the European Court of Human Rights in the case of Yukos Oil Company versus Russia, the Russian authorities proceed from the legal positions of Russia’s Constitutional Court stipulated in the resolution of January 19, 2017, about which the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe has also been informed," the Justice Ministry said.
Russia’s Constitutional Court earlier made a decision, which allows Russia to drop the implementation of the ECHR’s decision in the Yukos case as a ruling that contradicts the Constitution.
At the same time, the Justice Ministry confirmed that Russia would pay former Yukos shareholders judicial expenses awarded by the ECHR.
"The Russian authorities are currently organizing measures to pay the sum of judicial expenses awarded by the ECHR," the Justice Ministry said, responding to the relevant question.
According to the ECHR’s ruling, judicial expenses in the Yukos case amount to 300,000 euros.
The ECHR ruled on July 31, 2014 to award over 1.866 billion euros in compensation payments to former Yukos shareholders under their complaint filed against Russia.
The ECHR ruled as unfounded the Russian courts’ decisions obliging Yukos in 2000-2001 to pay penalties for tax offences. One of the arguments used by the ECHR was that the three-year limitation period had expired.
Under the Justice Ministry’s inquiry, Russia’s Constitutional Court ruled in January that the ECHR’s 1.8 bln euro award in the Yukos case could not be enforced.
As Constitutional Court Chairman Valery Zorkin said, the ECHR’s ruling on the compensation payment violated the Russian Constitution. According to him, the ECHR’s ruling based on the Convention’s interpretation, did not repeal the priority of the Fundamental Law for Russia.
On December 7, the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe requested Russia to provide information on the schedule of enforcing the ECHR’s ruling in the Yukos case by October 1, 2018.