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Implementation of the European Convention on Human Rights: key role of parliament

The role of the Ukrainian Parliament (Verkhovna Rada) in implementing judgments of the European Court of Human Rights was the focus of a capacity-building seminar on 21-22 March 2019 in Strasbourg – with parliamentary staff receiving advice on ways to check that new laws are “Convention-compliant” and how to better support members of the Parliament in pressing government for progress in implementing rulings.

The Ukrainian Parliament created a sub-committee to encourage implementation of Strasbourg Court judgments in June 2017, one of only a small number of parliaments in the Council of Europe to follow a 2011 recommendation by PACE.

Experts from the British, Dutch and Greek Parliaments covered the structures, skills, mechanisms, processes and practices to enable legislators to systematically scrutinise new laws and encourage the swift and full implementation of Court rulings.

They also laid out the main principles for this kind of work – including the need to proactively press for reform, seek information from and maintain dialogue with government, collaborate with NGOs and others, and work as a complement to the courts.

Other experts briefed participants on the work of the Council of Europe’s Department for the Execution of Judgments and other initiatives taken by the Assembly itself.