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Debating the Future of the European Court of Human Rights after the Interlaken Conference: Two Innovative Proposals

Debating the Future of the European Court of Human Rights after the Interlaken Conference: Two Innovative Proposals


The purpose of this article is to give new impetus to the topical debate on reforming the ECHR in the wake of the Interlaken Conference, at which the ECHR states parties agreed on a roadmap for the future evolution of the Convention system. We highlight two issues which have so far been underexposed in the literature. First, reform measures relating to the new admissibility criterion, just satisfaction, and the pilot judgment procedure are only partially promising, because they are premised on the condition of their being applicable telle quelle in all the states parties. If Convention reforms are to be effective, they must take due account of differing realities relating to a country's human rights situation and the quality of its judiciary. Secondly, given the very high proportion of so-called manifestly ill-founded applications, the Court's practice of rejecting them without giving reasons leads it into a legitimacy problem. We suggest a new provision in the Rules of Court which makes the Court's practice concerning the handling of manifestly ill-founded applications more transparent.
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