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Russian parliament speaker points to trust collapsing in ECHR’s ‘politicized’ rulings

April 14, 2017, 12:43 UTC+3 MOSCOW

ECHR has ordered Moscow to pay 3 mln euros in compensation to Beslan terror attack victims

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MOSCOW, April 14. /TASS/. Decisions by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) are frequently politicized, which can be illustrated by its April 13 ruling on the Beslan hostage crisis case, Speaker of the lower house of Russia’s parliament Vyacheslav Volodin told TASS on Friday.

The State Duma speaker also pointed to the need to do everything for providing assistance to Beslan residents.

The European Court of Human Rights in its verdict regarding the lawsuit filed by the relatives of the Beslan school terrorist attack ordered Russia to pay out roughly three million euros in compensation to the plaintiffs.

The case concerns the terrorist attack on a school in the city of Beslan, North Ossetia in September 2004. On the list of plaintiffs there are 409 names, including those of relatives of the hostages killed in the attack and in the operation to storm the school building, as well as injured hostages.

"When we speak about the ECHR’s rulings, these decisions are frequently of politicized nature. Incidentally, not only we but also other countries are drawing attention to this," Volodin said.

"And yesterday’s case is an example of this," he added.

"This is what Great Britain spoke about, stressing that the body financed by members of the Council of Europe makes decisions without taking national legislation into account," the State Duma speaker said.

"This factor must be taken into account but the ECHR ignores this," Volodin said.

Protocol on ECHR’s subsidiary role

In view of this, the State Duma passed a decision on ratifying Protocol No. 15 to the Convention on the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms on the ECHR’s subsidiary (additional) role with regard to national legal systems, the State Duma speaker said.

This agreement "implies that a final judgement in ECHR rulings is made by a national court after all, with reliance on national legislation and the knowledge of the situation directly in a country where a decision is made," Volodin said.

"That is why, it is necessary to proceed from this. When ECHR judges pass decisions, it would be right for them to request detailed information and work out rulings on the basis of adversarial principles as should be the case in any court," the State Duma speaker said.

"And, considering that they frequently do not ask anyone, their decisions are of politicized nature and trust for such decisions decreases," Volodin said.

"Moreover, it decreases not only on our part but also on the part of many European countries," he added.

At the same time, "it is necessary to do everything to help Beslan residents - both within the framework of decisions that were implemented and within the framework of allocating additional funds for the region," the State Duma speaker said.

Commenting on the ECHR’s ruling, Russia’s Justice Ministry said that "a number of ECHR conclusions are groundless and the arguments used are not very convincing and in conflict with the evidence provided by the Russian authorities."

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