Natisni vsebino

Human Rights Court Upholds Decision on Erased, Calls for Compensation Scheme

26.06.2012 14:25
Category: work and news

Ljubljana/Strasbourg, 26 June (STA) - The European Court of Human Rights upheld on Tuesday the 2010 ruling that found Slovenia in violation of the European Convention on Human Rights in the case of some 26,000 nationals of former Yugoslav republics who were deleted from the permanent residence register in 1992.

Ruling on a complaint filed eight years ago by 11 erased persons, who maintain that the erasure deprived them of the possibility to obtain Slovenian citizenship or permanent resident status, the Strasbourg court today found Slovenia violating articles 8, 13 and 14 of the Convention.

The court held in particular that "the Slovenian authorities had failed to remedy comprehensively and with the requisite promptness the grave consequences for the applicants".

The court ordered the Slovenian government to set up within one year a compensation scheme for the erased. It also decided to adjourn examination of all similar applications in the meantime.

In July 2010, the court found Slovenia has been violating articles 8 and 13 of the Convention, which refer to a right to respect for one's "private and family life, his home and his correspondence" and the right for an effective remedy before national authorities for violations of rights under the convention.

The court noted Slovenia has failed to pass legislation that would redress the situation and issue permanent residence permits to complainants while it also found Slovenia failing to observe relevant rulings of the Constitutional Court. It hence ordered Slovenia to pass remedial legislation and issue retroactive residence permits.

But Slovenia appealed the decision in October 2010, which led to the final ruling having been made today, in which the court upheld the previous ruling (violation of articles 8 and 13) but also found Slovenia violating article 14 which refers to the prohibition of discrimination.

The court said there had been a difference in treatment between the erased and other foreigners which were in a similar situation in respect of residence-related matters.

"Citizens of the former Yugoslavia who were residing in Slovenia had found themselves in legal vacuum, whereas 'real' aliens living in the country had been able to keep their residence permits under the Aliens Act," the court reasoned today.

It also ordered Slovenia to pay EUR 20,000 each in respect of non-pecuniary damage to Mustafa Kurić, Ana Mezga, Tripun Ristanović, Ali Berisha, Ilfan Sadik Ademi and Zoran Minić, and EUR 30,000 to the applicants jointly in respect of costs and expenses. It reserved the question of pecuniary damage for decision at a later date.

The Interior Ministry responded by saying the verdict needed to be studied now in detail, as did the manner of its implementation.

Human Rights Ombudsman Zdenka Čebašek Travnik said the decision had been expected and "discussed in European circles dealing with human rights already for some time".

She added that countries now expected of Slovenia to respect the decision of the Human Rights Court as well as existing Constitutional Court rulings on the matter.

All right-leaning parliamentary parties said they needed to examine the decision before commenting. The coalition Pensioners' Party (DeSUS) said it needed to be respected, as did the opposition Positive Slovenia (PS) and SocDems who pointed out it confirmed their view on the issue.

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