ECtHR Ruling of the Week: Court grants request for interim measure on behalf of Aleksei Navalny

Week-ending 21 August 2020

On Friday, 21 August 2020, the European Court of Human Rights granted a request for an interim measure on behalf of Aleksei Navalny, indicating to the Russian Government to allow his family and doctors to have access to him and see if he is fit for transfer to Germany for treatment.

The Court, after receiving a request on Mr Navalny’s behalf by his legal representative under Rule 39 of the Rules of Court on interim measures, decided to indicate to the Russian Government the following interim measures, to be enforced without delay, and in any event by noon on 22 August 2020:

  • to ensure that the applicant’s family (wife) has access to his medical file from Omsk hospital;
  • to ensure that the medical practitioners appointed by the applicant’s family have access to him in order to examine him and conclude if the applicant is fit for transfer for further treatment in Germany;
  • to inform the Court of the medical treatment the applicant receives, if any, and his current condition.

The Court has also asked both parties for a report by 24 August at 2 p.m. (French time) by doctors with the necessary relevant expertise on the applicant’s fitness for transport to Germany, if needed in a medically equipped plane. The Court also asked the Government to submit to the Court a copy of the applicant’s medical file by the same deadline.

According to the Rule 39 request, Mr Navalnyy, an opposition political activist, is in a coma on ventilation in a hospital in the town of Omsk after falling ill on a flight. His family has asked for permission to transport him to the Charité hospital in Berlin for treatment as he otherwise faces a risk to his life or health, in violation of Article 2 (right to life) of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Interim measures are decided in connection with proceedings before the Court, without prejudging any subsequent decisions on the admissibility or merits of the case. The Court grants such requests only on an exceptional basis, when applicants would otherwise face a real risk of irreversible harm.

For further information, see the fact-sheet on interim measures

Source: ‘The Court decides on interim measures in the case of Aleksey Navalnyy,’ Hudoc, 21 August 2020

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