14.11.2005 | Yevhen Zakharov

Ukraine will not appeal Strasbourg’s Ruling in the case “Myroslava Gongadze v. Ukraine"


The Ministry of Justice does not intend to appeal the ruling passed by the European Court of Human Rights in the case “Myroslava Gongadze v. Ukraine”.  This was announced by the Minister of Justice, Serhiy Holovaty. The Minister emphasised that his policy would differ from that which had been previously followed by the National Bureau on issues relating to the observance of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.  LIGABusinessinform was told in the press service of the Ministry of Justice, that Mr Holovaty had already discussed this with the Ombudsperson on issues relating to the observance of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, Baleriya Lutkovska.


“The Bureau is given the task of protecting human rights and ensuring the observance of the Convention and not, as was the case previously, lodging an appeal to the higher chamber after every case won by a Ukrainian citizen. Such a policy took time and it was unclear whose interests were being defended – whether that of State funds, or of State bureaucrat officials, or of the judge in Ukraine who had issued an unfair ruling”, Mr Holovaty stressed.


“The policy and actions of the Ombudsperson of the National Bureau must be different: a person managed to get to the truth, achieved just satisfaction, achieved reinstatement in the law – the State, the Ministry of Justice must be on the side of the individual”, the Minister believes.


Commentary of “Prava Ludyny”:

In our view, Holovaty is only correct in part. Certainly in cases like that of the Gongadze case or similar, one should probably not lodge an appeal with the Higher Chamber.  But after all it does happen that the claimant makes an unreasonable demand for compensation for damages as in the case of Sovtransavto v. Ukraine.  The Ombudsperson lodged an appeal to the Higher Chamber and the latter significantly reduced the sum which had to be paid.


There are two parties to a court case – the claimant and the State. The agent of the State should after all defend the interests of the State, and not of the procedural opponent, and it would, in our opinion, be incorrect to deny the right to an appeal. Another question is how we should understand “the interests of the State”. Indeed, in many cases the interests of the State would be best served by acknowledging that the violation of the Convention took place. Incidentally, the National Bureau in this instance is actually behaving sensibly as can be seen by the case of Afanasyev.

Yevhen Zakharov

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