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PACE strongly condemns cases when the Strasbourg Court’s ‘interim measures’ are ignored

PACE has strongly condemned instances of outright violation of “interim measures” requested by the European Court of Human Rights – such as halting an individual’s extradition or deportation, for example, until it can be properly assessed whether they might face the risk of torture.

Adopting a resolution on the basis of a report by Kimmo Sasi (Finland, EPP/CD), the Assembly named Italy, Russia, the Slovak Republic and Turkey as being involved in such violations. Ignoring the Court’s legally binding measures – designed to prevent the creation of a fait accompli – was “a clear disregard of the European system of protection of human rights”, the parliamentarians said.

The Assembly also expressed its concern at the recent phenomenon, observed in Russia, of the temporary disappearance of applicants protected by interim measures and their subsequent reappearance in the country which had requested extradition. “The clandestine methods used indicate that the authorities had to be aware of the illegality of such actions, which can be likened to the practice of ‘extraordinary renditions’ repeatedly condemned by the Assembly.”

PACE said it also welomed the increasing use, by the Court, of factual presumptions and the reversal of the burden of proof when dealing with states’ refusals to co-operate with it – for example when states failed to provide full, frank and fair disclosure in response to requests by the Court for further information or evidence.