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“Meždunarodnoe pravosudie” (International Justice) Journal

№ 1(21) 2017. Maria Voskobitova. Approaches of the European Court of Human Rights to claims of domestic violence against women

Maria Voskobitova - Candidate of Sciences (Ph.D.) in Law, Associate Professor, Russian Foreign Trade Academy, Moscow, Russia.

DOI: 10.21128/2226-2059-2017-1-85-95

Abstract. Domestic violence, as a theme for wide public discussion, appeared at large in the public discourse rather recently – within last two-three decades. There were several media and web publications that demonstrated high level of violence against women in Russia. Last years the amendments to Russian Criminal Code were adopted that prescribed official criminal investigation of domestic violence cases. Because of that, recent public discussion on approaches of international human rights bodies could be helpful in developing better understanding among lawyers of the standards of protection of women against domestic violence. Universal and regional Inter-American and European systems of human rights protection provide more or less unified approach in respect of protection of women against domestic violence. This approach based on recognising that any kind of violence against women is an act of discrimination. But the European Court of Human Rights approach is more sophisticated in some aspects dealing with States’ responsibilities for the actions of private persons and based on previous case law on right to life and prohibition of torture. The European Court pays special attention to two main issues of governmental agents’ actions in response to domestic violence claims. The first is whether domestic authorities were aware or ought to be aware about domestic violence. The second question is about how national authorities react when claims were submitted. Both of these issues European Court considers as substantial aspects of the right to life, prohibition of torture and right to dignity and respect of private and family life. Issues of procedural aspects – e.g. effective investigation – are rare in domestic violence cases. A special aspect of the European Court approach is a more universal application of conception of discrimination in domestic violence cases.

Keywords: domestic violence; European Court of Human Rights; positive obligations; discrimination; intentional injuries.

Citation: Voskobitova M. (2017) Podkhody Evropeyskogo Suda po pravam cheloveka k rassmotreniyu del o domashnem nasilii v otnoshenii zhenshchin [Approaches of the European Court of Human Rights to claims of domestic violence against women]. Mezhdunarodnoe pravosudie, no.1, pp.85–95. (In Russian).

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