The Government of Lithuania wants the country's courts to have the opportunity to turn to the European Court of Human Rights for consultation while hearing cases that might involve human rights violations.
European Court of Human Rights
© Reuters/Scanpix

On Wednesday, the government backed the Ministry of Justice's proposal to ask the Lithuanian president to propose to the country's parliament to ratify two protocols of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. After they come into force, the ECHR's work efficiency will allegedly increase and its area of competence will expand.

One of the convention protocols would give states' top courts and tribunals the right to turn to the ECHR with requests to give its advisory opinion on the clarification and application of the rights and freedoms enshrined in the convention and its protocols.

"Once this protocol comes into force, it will create legal conditions in Lithuania for the Constitutional Court, the Supreme Court and the Supreme Administrative Court to consult the Strasbourg court when it is necessary to identify whether human rights have not been violated in a specific case. Under such a procedure, human rights in our country would be even better-protected and cooperation between the ECHR and national government institutions would be strengthened," Lithuanian Justice Minister Juozas Olekas was quoted in a ministry statement on Wednesday.

Currently, only individuals can submit petitions to the ECHR.

Meanwhile, the second convention protocol, among other things, would cut the term for submitting a petition to the ECHR after the last ruling of a national court from 6 to 4 months.

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