Europe, your human rights

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Author: Angelika Nussberger

DOI: 10.21128/2226-2059-2020-3-3-19

Keywords: democracy; human rights; politics; principle of subsidiarity; separation of powers


Europe is famous for its comprehensive human rights protection system built up after the Second World War. It was the answer to negative features of European history such as permanent wars, authoritarian and despotic regimes and persecution of minorities. Therefore, it is considered to be constitutive for Europe’s identity. The article analyses in how far human rights can give a convincing answer to the “sins of the past”. While they cannot stop wars and prevent the outbreak of hostilities they can bring to the fore human suffering and establish responsibilities for wrongdoing even in times of armed conflict. While they cannot avoid the turn-around of democratic systems into illiberal ones they can make the voices of the opposition heard. Whenever the European Court of Human Rights relies on Article 18 of the European Convention on Human Rights, the democratic alarm bell rings. Last but not least, the jurisprudence of the Court is an efficient means for the protection of minorities. It is necessary to reflect on the future development of the system, but at the same time to see its undeniable achievements in the past.

About the author: Angelika Nussberger – Former Vice President at the European Court of Human Rights, Owner of the Chair of Constitutional Law, International Law and Comparative Law at the University of Cologne, Director of the Institute of Eastern European Law, International Judge at the Constitutional Court of Bosnia and Herzegovina, Cologne, Germany.

Citation: Nussberger A. (2020) Evropa, tvoi prava cheloveka [Europe, your human rights]. Mezhdunarodnoe pravosudie, vol.10, no.3, p.3–9. (In Russian).


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