Wednesday

16th Oct 2019

Court of Human Rights decisions not binding, says German court

A landmark decision on hierarchy in European law has been taken by the German Constitutional court.

The Court on Thursday (14 October) found that it is not obliged to hold to the rulings by the European Court of Human Rights.

Read and decide

Join EUobserver today

Support quality EU news

Get instant access to all articles — and 18 year's of archives. 30 days free trial.

... or join as a group

According to Germany's Constitutional court, rulings by the Strasbourg court are "interpreting aids" which have to be taken into account but not strictly followed if they contradict German constitutional law.

The court justified its decision by saying the German Constitution (Grundgesetz) is worth more than the Human Rights Convention agreed under international law.

Under the German system, international law is at the level of a simple national law.

The German judges found that while the constitution wants Germany to be in a community of free states it does not mean giving up the "sovereignty" of Germany.

They say that German courts, therefore, should neither enforce the Human Right's rulings in a "schematic" way nor ignore them altogether.

The ruling came about after an unmarried father wanted access to his child. A German national court denied him this even though the European Court of Human Rights in a previous ruling had said that it is a human right for the natural father to have access rights to his child.

The European Court of Human Rights was founded in 1959 and overviews the upholding of human rights in the 46 countries that are members of the Council of Europe.

Opinion

Polish election: analysing why PiS won

Support for democracy was particularly low in Poland with only 19 percent consistently supporting democracy - only Hungary and Bulgaria scored lower.

Stakeholder

Brussels welcomes Nordic culture

Brussels will play host to more than 400 Nordic artists and creative practitioners this autumn, organised by one of Europe's most influential cultural institutions, BOZAR.

Opinion

Threat to Unesco park mars Montenegro's EU bid

The site contains Europe's second largest natural pasture and hundreds of local families depend on it, but part of it has been slated to become a military training ground.

Stakeholders' Highlights

  1. Nordic Council of MinistersBrussels welcomes Nordic culture
  2. UNESDAUNESDA appoints Nicholas Hodac as Director General
  3. UNESDASoft drinks industry co-signs Circular Plastics Alliance Declaration
  4. FEANIEngineers Europe Advisory Group: Building the engineers of the future
  5. Nordic Council of MinistersNew programme studies infectious diseases and antibiotic resistance
  6. UNESDAUNESDA reduces added sugars 11.9% between 2015-2017
  7. International Partnership for Human RightsEU-Uzbekistan Human Rights Dialogue: EU to raise key fundamental rights issues
  8. Nordic Council of MinistersNo evidence that social media are harmful to young people
  9. Nordic Council of MinistersCanada to host the joint Nordic cultural initiative 2021
  10. Vote for the EU Sutainable Energy AwardsCast your vote for your favourite EUSEW Award finalist. You choose the winner of 2019 Citizen’s Award.
  11. Nordic Council of MinistersEducation gets refugees into work
  12. Counter BalanceSign the petition to help reform the EU’s Bank

Join EUobserver

Support quality EU news

Join us