PACE Elects Hanna Yudkivska Judge of European Court of Human Rights
STRASBURG – The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) at a meeting this week in plenary session in Strasbourg, on April 27, 2010, elected Hanna Yudkivska as judge to the European Court of Human Rights, reports the Institute of Religious Freedom.
Mrs. Yudkivska, having obtained an absolute majority of votes, is elected a judge of the European Court of Human Rights for a term of office of six years starting as of the date of taking up office and in any event not later than three months as from April 27, 2010. When Protocol 14 of the European Convention of Human Rights comes into force on June 1, 2010, this term of office will be extended ipso jure to a period of nine years. Thirty-six-year-old Mrs. Yudkivska worked in 2005-2009 as a lawyer in the European Court of Human rights and in 2009 was advisor to the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights. She is known in Ukraine as an experienced human rights lawyer.
Her main rival, politician Serhii Holovaty, twice held the post of the minister of justice of Ukraine and is now a member of the parliamentary Party of Regions. The third candidate, lawyer Stanislav Shevchuk, received only 16 votes.
Judges are elected by PACE from a list of three candidates nominated by each state which has ratified the European Convention on Human Rights.
The election of Hanna Yudkivska ends a long period of uncertainty, in which every time ad hoc judges had to be appointed for applications concerning Ukraine. For several years (at least since 2007) a battle raged over the list of three candidates. Ukraine had submitted an entirely new list after one of the initial candidates withdrew. This led to such dismay at the Parliamentary Assembly that in the end the court was asked by the Committee of Ministers to issue an Advisory Opinion. Mrs. Yudkivska was the only candidate on the original list without some controversy. Now, at last, there will be a fixed judge in respect of Ukraine. After all, there is a lot of work to do, with Ukraine being in the top four of countries against which the court issues judgments.