by Konstantin Ivanov ATANASOV and Others
The European Court of Human Rights (Fifth Section), sitting on 9 June 2009 as a Chamber composed of:
Mirjana Lazarova Trajkovska, judges,
Pavlina Panova, ad hoc judge,
and Claudia Westerdiek, Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 1 November 2004,
Having regard to the correspondence with the parties,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The applicants, Mr Konstantin Ivanov Atanasov, Mrs Anna Vladimirova Poptomova and Mr Vladimir Konstantinov Atanasov, are Bulgarian nationals who were born in 1922, 1928 and 1956 respectively and live in Sofia. They were represented before the Court by Mr V. Kremenski, a lawyer practising in Sofia. The Bulgarian Government (“the Government”) were represented by their Agent, Mrs M. Dimova of the Ministry of Justice. Zdravka Kalaydjieva, the judge elected in respect of Bulgaria, withdrew from sitting in the case. On 30 January 2009 the Government appointed in her stead Ms Pavlina Panova as an ad hoc judge (Article 27 § 2 of the Convention and Rule 29 § 1 of the Rules of the Court).
The applicants complained, relying on Article 6 § 1 of the Convention, that they had been arbitrarily deprived of the property of an apartment they had received from the State in 1968. The complaint is similar to the complaints about arbitrary deprivation of property examined by the Court in its Velikovi and Others v. Bulgaria judgement (nos. 43278/98, 45437/99, 48014/99, 48380/99, 51362/99, 53367/99, 60036/00, 73465/01 and 194/02, 15 March 2007).
On 26 March 2008 the Court sent a letter to the applicants informing them that notice of the application had been given to the Government of Bulgaria.
By letter dated 10 September 2008 the Government’s observations were sent to the applicants, who were invited to submit, by 4 November 2008, any observations in reply together with any claims for just satisfaction.
By two letters dated 12 December 2008, sent by registered post to the applicants and to their lawyer, the applicants were notified that the period allowed for submission of their observations had expired and were requested to indicate whether they wished to maintain the application. Their attention was drawn to Article 37 § 1 (a) of the Convention, which provides that the Court may strike a case out of its list of cases where the circumstances lead to the conclusion that the applicant does not intend to pursue the application. Both letters were returned with notes that the applicants and their lawyer no longer lived on the addresses indicated.
The applicants’ latest communication with the Court dates back to November 2004.
The Court considers that, in these circumstances, the applicants may be regarded to have lost interest and no longer wishing to pursue their application, within the meaning of Article 37 § 1 (a) of the Convention. Furthermore, in accordance with Article 37 § 1 in fine, the Court finds no special circumstances regarding respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols which require the continued examination of the case. In view of the above, it is appropriate to strike the case out of the list.
For these reasons, the Court unanimously
Decides to strike the application out of its list of cases.
Claudia Westerdiek Peer Lorenzen