Independence of the Judiciary and Rule of Law in the Jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights

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Author: Angelika Nussberger

DOI: 10.21128/1812-7126-2016-2-142-151

Keywords: European Convention on Human Rights; human rights; independence of the judiciary; legal certainty; proportionality; rule of law


This article focuses on the role of the European Court of Human Rights in the promotion of Europe’s closely related fundamental values – such as human rights, the rule of law and democracy. Human rights and rule of law may be considered as two sides of one coin. They inspire the whole Convention and should be understood as guiding principles of the Court. The Convention and the Court are also aware of the important link between rule of law and democracy and both ascend from accepting their interaction to a broader concept of the “European public order”. The article is based on examination of a large number of individual cases brought before the Court. Scrutinizing many important cases, it analyses some essential features of the rule of law – independence of the judiciary, in the first place, as well as fair trial, proportionality and legal certainty. The author draws attention to some of the new aspects in the Court’s jurisprudence. For example, the Court increasingly takes recourse to the “proceduralisation of justice”, i. e. focusing on the procedure, in compliance with basic requirements of rule of law. Thus The Court tries to find the way to judgements involving all those concerned in a fair trial.

About the author: Angelika Nussberger – Judge of the European Court of Human Rights, Professor of Law at the Cologne University.

Citation: Nussberger A. (2016) Nezavisimost' sudebnoy vlasti i verkhovenstvo prava v praktike Evropeyskogo Suda po pravam cheloveka [Independence of the Judiciary and Rule of Law in the Jurisprudence of the European Court of Human Rights]. Sravnitel'noe konstitutsionnoe obozrenie, no. 2, pp. 142– 151. (In Russian).


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