(«Postup», Lviv, 6 May 2004)
During two next years the number of the cases in the European Court of human rights, in which Ukraine would lose to common citizens, can increase tenfold and reach two thousand.
“This would happen if Ukraine would not change her legislation, which still contains the norms that violate human rights”, stated Minister of Justice of Ukraine Oleksandr Lavrynovich.
According to the words of the Minister, such prognosis is caused by the fact, that the cases directed from Ukraine to the European Court of human rights are now more well-grounded than earlier and meet the Convention on the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms, on which the European Court bases its decisions. Besides, advocates participate now in consideration of the cases.
As a result, since the beginning of the current year the National Bureau of the Ministry of Justice received from the European Court 176 claims of Ukrainian citizens against Ukraine for consideration and presentation of propositions. In two cases the European Court has already approved the resolutions in favor of citizens. This situation evidences the increment of the activity of Ukrainians in the protection of their rights: in 2003 the European Court sent 163 cases for consideration in the National Bureau, and 6 of these cases were won by citizens.
Lavrinovich said that the decisions against Ukraine were caused both by existence of the norms in the Ukrainian laws, which restricted human rights, and by the incorrect practical application of legal norms.
In order to liquidate these drawbacks, the Ministry of Justice elaborated and prepared, during January-March of 2004, the commentaries for government on 56 claims sent by the Court. These claims concerned the violations of such rights as prohibition of torture, right for liberty and personal security, the right for fair trial, in particular concerning the reasonable terms of court consideration, existence of efficient tools for protection and the right for peaceful possession of property.
Claims of Ukrainian citizens to the European Court of human rights (since 1997 the Court received more than 8 thousand of such claims) is a sign of increase of sense of justice of people and their wish to solve their problems in a civil way. However, the Ukrainian citizens have begun to use not only foreign, but also domestic legal methods.
The Minister also pointed out that among all legal expertises, which had been made in Ukraine in 2003, more than 45% had been made by request of citizens and 20% -- by request of the Ministry of Interior, about 13% -- by request of courts (in particular, economic ones), 6% -- prosecutors organs; 3% -- State Tax Administration and 1% -- State executive service.