Case of European Court of Human Rights, January 20, 2015 (case Đurić and Others v. Bosnia and Herzegovina)

Resolution Date:January 20, 2015
SUMMARY

Violation of Article 6 - Right to a fair trial (Article 6 - Enforcement proceedings Article 6-1 - Access to court) Violation of Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 - Protection of property (Article 1 para. 1 of Protocol No. 1 - Peaceful enjoyment of possessions) Respondent State to take measures of a general character (Article 46-2 - Measures of a general character) Non-pecuniary damage - award (Article... (see full summary)

 
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Information Note on the Court’s case-law No. 181

January 2015

Đurić and Others v. Bosnia and Herzegovina - 79867/12, 79873/12, 80027/12 et al.

Judgment 20.1.2015 [Section IV]

Article 46

Article 46-2

Execution of judgment

Measures of a general character

Respondent State required to amend settlement plan for the enforcement of final domestic judgments

Facts – Between 1999 and 2008, Republika Srpska (an Entity of Bosnia and Herzegovina) was ordered to pay war damages to the applicants by a first-instance court. The payments were not made. In 2009, in the case of Čolić and Others v. Bosnia and Herzegovina, in the European Court held that the failure to comply with final domestic judgments awarding war damages had breached Article 6 of the Convention and Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 and, in view of the large number of other similar cases, invited the State to take general measures to solve the problem. As a result, in 2012, Republika Srpska introduced a settlement plan which envisaged the enforcement of final judgments ordering payment of war damages in cash within 13 years starting from 2013 and the payment of EUR 50 in respect of non-pecuniary damage. The enforcement time-frame was extended to 20 years in 2013.

Law – Article 6 of the Convention and Article 1 of Protocol No. 1: The Court examined the adequacy of the settlement plan. It considered the proposed time-frame of 20 years too long in the light of the lengthy delays which had already occurred. Although the Court was aware of the State’s significant public debt and the number of non-enforced judgments and cases pending before the domestic courts, it reiterated that it was not open to a State authority to cite a lack of funds as an excuse for not honouring a judgment debt. Moreover, it was the Stateʼs legal system that had allowed for the creation of such a high number of judgments awarding war damages. While a...

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