Advertisement

Slovenia

Implementation of International Human Rights Decisions in Slovenia
  • Dragica Wedam LukićEmail author
Chapter

Abstract

Pursuant to Article 8(1) of the Constitution of the Republic of Slovenia, laws and regulations must comply with generally accepted principles of international law and with treaties that are binding on Slovenia. Paragraph 2 of the same article states that ratified and published treaties shall be applied directly. This entails that the Republic of Slovenia recognises the primacy of international law over laws and other regulations of internal law, which, in the hierarchy of legal norms, places international law below the Constitution and above the laws. Through ratification and publication, the international treaties become an integral part of the domestic legal system, and only if their provisions cannot be directly applied in determining the rights and obligations of individuals is it necessary to adopt appropriate rules for their implementation. However, if their provisions are directly applicable (self-executing), they are to be used directly regardless of whether their content is reproduced in the internal regulations or not.

The European Convention on Human Rights is a ‘living instrument’ that develops continuously through its protocols and the case law of the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR). In accordance with the principle of subsidiarity, it is primarily the duty of the Member States to ensure the protection of human rights. It is evident from a number of Constitutional Court decisions that this Court is well aware of its role. In many cases in which violations of Convention rights that are also enshrined in the Constitution were specifically alleged by the parties to the constitutional complaint, the Constitutional Court considered the complaints in the light of relevant constitutional rights, taking into account the standards set by the ECtHR. In some cases, the Constitutional Court, referring to the case law of the ECtHR, gave wider content to an individual right protected by the Constitution. Furthermore, it is evident from a number of the Constitutional Court decisions that this Court is familiar with the case law of the ECtHR and considers it in its decision-making, although it may not refer to it expressly.

On the other hand, it should be noted that the Convention provides only minimum standards of human rights protection. Furthermore, the ECtHR grants the Member States a certain scope of margin of appreciation. Thereby, the Court acknowledges the specific characteristics of the legal systems of the Member States, as well as the political, economic, social and cultural situation in these states. This means that in cases where the ECtHR follows a restrictive approach, its case law should not be construed as an argument for a restrictive interpretation of human rights, which are afforded broader protection under the Slovene Constitution.

References

  1. Betetto N (2012) Vpliv Evropske konvencije za človekove pravice na slovensko sodno prakso [The impact of the European Convention on Human Rights on Slovenian case law]. Podjetje in delo 2012:1235–1248Google Scholar
  2. Bernhardt R (2007) Rechtsfortbildung durch den Europäischen Gerichtshof für Menschenrechte. In: Breitenmoser S, Ehrenzeller B, Sassoli M, Stoffel W, Wagner Pfeifer B (eds) Human rights, democracy and the rule of law, Liber amicorum Luzius Wildhaber. Dike Verlag AG, Zürich, St. Gallen, pp 92–101Google Scholar
  3. Čeferin R (2012) Meje svobode tiska v praksi Ustavnega sodišča in Evropskega sodišča za človekove pravice [The limits of Press freedom in jurisprudence of the constitutional court and the European Court of Human Rights]. GV Založba, LjubljanaGoogle Scholar
  4. Frowein J (2007) The binding force of ECHR judgments and its limits. In: Breitenmoser S, Ehrenzeller B, Sassoli M, Stoffel W, Wagner Pfeifer B (eds) Human rights, democracy and the rule of law, Liber amicorum Luzius Wildhaber. Dike Verlag AG, Zürich, St. Gallen, pp 261–269Google Scholar
  5. Graseli G (2002) In: Šturm L (ed) Komentar Ustave Republike Slovenije [Commentary on the constitution of the Republic of Slovenia]. Fakulteta za podiplomske in evropske študije, Ljubljana, pp 140−144Google Scholar
  6. Kerševan E (2012) Precedenčna moč odločitev Ustavnega sodišča [The authority of constitutional court decisions as precedents]. Pravnik 67:797–833Google Scholar
  7. Kogovšek Šalamon, N (2012) Izbrisanim je treba priznati odškodnino [Erased persons must be recognised compensation]. Pravna praksa 2012(26):25–27Google Scholar
  8. Macdonald RStJ (1993) The margin of appreciation. In: Macdonald RStJ, Matscher F, Petzold H (eds) The European system for the protection of human rights. Martinus Nijhoff, Dordrecht, pp 83–124Google Scholar
  9. Matscher F (1993) Methods of interpretation of the convention. In: Macdonald RStJ, Matscher F, Petzold H (eds) The European system for the protection of human rights. Martinus Nijhoff, Dordrecht, pp 63–81Google Scholar
  10. Petzold H (1993) The convention and the principle of subsidiarity. In: Macdonald R St J, Matscher F, Petzold H (eds) The European system for the protection of human rights. Martinus Nijhoff, Dordrecht, pp 41–62Google Scholar
  11. Ribičič C (2007) Evropsko pravo človekovih pravic [European law on human rights], Selected Chapters. Univerza v Ljubljani, Pravna fakulteta, LjubljanaGoogle Scholar
  12. Ribičič C (2010) Človekove pravice in ustavna demokracija [Human rights and constitutional democracy]. Študentska založba, LjubljanaGoogle Scholar
  13. Škrk M (2007) Odnos med mednarodnim pravom in notranjim pravom v praksi Ustavnega sodišča [The relationship between internationl law and internal law in the case law of the constitutional court]. Pravnik 62:275–311Google Scholar
  14. Škrk M (2010) The relationship between international law and internal law in the case law of the constitutional court. In: Vukas B, Šošić TM (eds) International law: new actors, new concept–continuing dilemmas; Liber Amicorum Božidar Bakotić. Brill Nijhoff, Leiden, pp 41–47Google Scholar
  15. Škrk M (2012) “Ukradeni otroci” in sodna imuniteta držav [“Stolen Children” and jurisdictional immunity of states]. Pravnik 67:321–350Google Scholar
  16. Sovdat J (2002) In: Šturm L (ed) Komentar Ustave Republike Slovenije [Commentary on the constitution of the Republic of Slovenia]. Fakulteta za podiplomske in evropske študije, Ljubljana, pp 144−151Google Scholar
  17. Umek U (2011) In: Šturm, L (ed) Komentar Ustave Republike Slovenije, Dopolnitev – A [Commentary on the constitution of the Republic of Slovenia, Appendix A]. Fakulteta za podiplomske in evropske študije, Ljubljana, pp 131−145Google Scholar
  18. Wildhaber L (2006) The European Court of Human Rights, 1998–2006, history, achievements reform. N.P. Engel, Kehl am RheinGoogle Scholar
  19. Zupančič B (2004) O razlagi sodnih precedensov in sodb ter posebej sodb Evropskega sodišča za človekove pravice [On the interpretation of legal precedents and of the judgements of the European Court of Human Rights]. Revus, revija za evropsko ustavnost 2004(2):9−27Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of LjubljanaLjubljanaSlovenia

Personalised recommendations