As part of a package of changes designed to improve its working procedures, PACE has decided to create a special committee to deal with the election of judges to the European Court of Human Rights.
The new 20-member committee – meeting in camera – will interview candidates for judge on the Court and assess their CVs before making recommendations to the full Assembly, which selects judges from a shortlist by voting.
It will also seek to ensure that the national procedures for selecting candidates comply with the Assembly’s criteria, which aim at ensuring fully qualified candidates of both sexes.
The Assembly was debating a report prepared by Liliana Palihovici (Republic of Moldova, EPP/CD) which evaluated a wide-ranging reform carried out in 2011. The reform had met the expectations of members and shown positive results, increasing participation levels, the Assembly said.
Other changes to the rules aim to simplify the procedure for challenging credentials, limit the number of rapporteurships of any one member, and introduce a waiting period before outgoing committee chairs and vice-chairs may stand for election again.