Ten of the 47 member countries of the Council of Europe informed the Secretary General of the organization derogate from compliance with the obligations in emergencies in connection with coronavirus infection


Ten of the 47 member countries of the Council of Europe informed the Secretary General of the organization derogate from compliance with the obligations in emergency situations in Association with coronavirus infection. This is stated in the review “the Restriction of citizens’ rights in the countries of the Council of Europe on the background of the pandemic virus COVID-19” prepared by the Committee against torture. Russia in this list does not, although the fact of such notification may relieve the state of proving their case in case of challenging his action in the Strasbourg court, write “Vedomosti”.

On the limitation of human rights was notified by Albania, Armenia, Estonia, Georgia, Latvia, Northern Macedonia, Moldova, Romania, San Marino and Serbia. For example, Armenia declared a state of emergency, which can restrict the right to personal liberty, freedom of movement and right of ownership. While Estonia has entered before may 1, the state of emergency and warned of possible derogation from the rights to liberty and security of person, fair trial, respect for private and family life, freedom of Assembly and Association, education, protection of property and freedom of movement.

Russia in this list, although some rights to its territory is limited. So, in almost all regions introduced the mode of increased readiness, which may limit the right to liberty and security of person, fair trial, respect for private and family life, freedom of speech, Assembly and freedom of movement, right to education.

These restrictions are not subject to article 15 of the Convention, as the authorities made no official statement on the matter. But since the Convention itself permits restriction of most of the rights enshrined in it, including in the interests of national security and public order and to prevent the spread of infectious diseases, the situation a global pandemic can satisfy these conditions.

When the ECHR was discussed, such derogation in accordance with article 15 of the Convention, the court gives national authorities wide latitude to prevent an emergency situation. But the ECtHR will assess whether these measures are strictly necessary. As long as such action infringes on the fundamental rights like right to freedom and personal immunity, the court must ensure that it was fully justified by the circumstances of the emergency and adequate safeguards against abuse. In this case, the ECtHR assesses whether measures are used for the legitimate purpose for which intended.

In this regard, human rights activists wonder whether the informal crisis situation can be equated to the emergency in justification of the restrictions. Derogations under article 15 does not depend on the establishment of the official status of a state of emergency or any similar regime at the national level, but to strengthen the legality of the derogation, the state is obliged to inform the Council of Europe, even if in the country does not set an official state of emergency.

The European Convention does not provide for limitations on the obligation to ensure the right to life, prohibition of torture and slavery, the conviction for the offence, when the offence was not recognized as a criminal offense, re-conviction, or punishment in criminal law. The exercise of other rights can be limited in different forms, including in connection with extraordinary circumstances, but only in the presence of war or emergency threatening the life of the nation.

Threat assessment is defined by the European court of human rights (ECHR) on the basis of the specific circumstances of particular cases. The derogation must have a clear basis in domestic law for protection from arbitrary and should be required to deal with a specific crisis situation.

If a country does not notify a Council of Europe derogate from the rights , but introduces a restrictive regime, then the authorities of a country can not justify the violation of rights by reference to the appropriate procedure. In case of receipt of complaints of restrictions the court will consider each case separately and to examine the justification for the action.

The majority of citizens around the world are willing to suffer restrictions in order to win over COVID-19

81% of people worldwide are willing to suffer limitations in their rights if it helps to cope with the coronavirus pandemic, the poll of holding “ROMIR” and Gallup International. According to RBC, the survey was conducted in Argentina, Austria, Bulgaria, Germany, India, Indonesia, Iraq, Italy, Kazakhstan, Malaysia, Pakistan, Russia, USA, Thailand, the Philippines, Switzerland, South Korea, Japan, in April. From March to April the number of respondents who agree to the infringement of the rights in order to win over a coronavirus increased from 75 to 81%.

Most ready to limit the rights of sociologists revealed among respondents from Iraq and Pakistan (at 92% in both); the number of those who are not willing to sacrifice rights to combat the coronavirus, there is 6% and 8% respectively.

Among the countries with the highest number of ready-to constraints is also India and Thailand (91%), Germany (89%), Austria, Switzerland and the Philippines (86%), Italy (85%). The last place in the ranking is Japan: there’s absolutely willing to sacrifice the rights for the victory over the coronavirus is only 7%, just ready to agree to limitation of rights 40%.

In Russia the restrictions agree 69% (a month ago the figure was 60%) in the U.S. – 68%. In comparison with the March wave of the survey the number of respondents who are not willing to tolerate the limitations due to the pandemic has declined from 19% to 15%.

Most declared unwillingness to restrictions in Japan (42% of all respondents in the country), the second place – Russia (28%) and the USA (25%). According to experts, the answers of citizens are correlated with General trust in government and distrust on the part of the Russians should be a Wake up call for the leaders of the country.

Earlier it was reported that 56% of Russians believe the wrong official information about the coronavirus, and more trust in the familiar words of the doctors. 29% believe that the government underestimates the actual number of cases and the complexity of the situation, and almost as many, however, believe that the situation has blown and seems to be worse than it is. 4% of Russians said they do not follow official information about the epidemic of coronavirus. And 60% of respondents said that they trust or partially trust the information that they can report personally familiar doctors.

Although the data of the index of isolation shows that the Russians were more likely to violate the regime, the majority (90%) of respondents VTSIOM Muscovites claim that most of their friends and relatives follows the rules of self-isolation. In Russia the figure is lower, but not significantly – 81%. The majority of Russians (63%) assess measures taken by the Russian authorities as sufficient, also from 30 March, the proportion of Russians who have a positive assessment of measures for preparation of medical institutions to accept patients.

The majority of Russians (80%) have less to walk or just stopped doing it in the spread of the coronavirus. Thus, the number of the Russians reduced the number of trips has doubled – in the polls of March 26, it was 40%. Much less likely to go to the grocery store or pharmacy were 76% of the respondents. Older relatives don’t see 69% of Russians.

From personal meetings with friends and acquaintances refused the vast majority of respondents – 84% vs. 57% in the first study and 76% in the second. Also 69% in the last week or two stopped to shake hands and hug at the meeting: 49% of all stopped doing it, the remaining 20% rarely do. This group in the country increased by 24 percentage points from 26 March.

Exits from the house for important reasons – a trip to the store, or the pharmacy – the Russians have also reduced: 76% do it much less often or not doing at all. Twice people stopped to walk, or reduced the number of walks: 80% vs 40% on March 26. In the capital, their share is 88% – 36 p. p. more than two weeks ago. Meeting with elderly relatives and friends limited 69% of Russians, which is 28 percentage points higher than on March 26. In Moscow the share of those who are so concerned about the safety of older people was 75%, up 22% from the end of March.

The survey showed that residents of the capital, the daily practice has changed more than the national average. In Moscow the share of those who became less likely to go outside rose to 88% versus 52% in the first study. Tactile contact is avoided 77% of residents, 58% strongly stopped to do it, rather isolated from friends and acquaintances, 90% of Muscovites. Shopping is not out 82% of respondents in the capital, which is 33% higher than on March 26.