The Implications of the Accession Agreement of the EU to the ECHR
AbstractIn April 2013 the European Union and the member states of the Council of Europe reached consensus on a draft Agreement on the Accession of the EU to the ECHR. This event represents a milestone development for the protection of fundamental rights in the EU. The Accession has an enormous symbolic value for the European Union. We argue that the Accession Agreement creates strong institutional pressures for the ECtHR to raise its standards of protection up to the level set by the Court of Justice of the EU. This paper examines as well the dialogue between the Court of Justice of the EU and the European Court of Human Rights regarding due process rules in the context of targeted anti-terror sanctions imposed by the UN Security Council. By analysing the references that the two courts make to each other’s case law in the recent landmark decisions in Nada and Kadi II, the paper argues that the rivaling yet constructive relationship between CJEU and the ECtHR has played a key role in re-adjusting the balance between international security and fundamental rights in Europe. But what are the effects of accession on the ECHR and its court – the European Court of Human Rights? As the paper suggests, the looming accession of the EU to the ECHR influences the interaction between the two courts, and is already palpable in the case law of both.
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