CASE OF HYDE PARK AND OTHERS v. MOLDOVA (no. 2)
(Application no. 45094/06)
31 March 2009
This judgment may be subject to editorial revision.
In the case of Hyde Park and Others v. Moldova (no. 2),
The European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section), sitting as a Chamber composed of:
David Thór Björgvinsson,
Mihai Poalelungi, judges,
and Lawrence Early, Section Registrar,
Having deliberated in private on 10 March 2009,
Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:
I. THE CIRCUMSTANCES OF THE CASE
II. RELEVANT DOMESTIC LAW
(1) Assemblies shall be conducted peacefully, without any sort of weapons, and shall ensure the protection of participants and the environment, without impeding the normal use of public highways, road traffic and the operation of economic undertakings and without degenerating into acts of violence capable of endangering the public order and the physical integrity and life of persons or their property.
Assemblies shall be suspended in the following circumstances:
(a) denial and defamation of the State and of the people;
(b) incitement to war or aggression and incitement to hatred on ethnic, racial or religious grounds;
c) incitement to discrimination, territorial separatism or public violence;
d) acts that undermine the constitutional order.
(1) Assemblies may be conducted in squares, streets, parks and other public places in cities, towns and villages, and also in public buildings.
(2) It shall be forbidden to conduct an assembly in the buildings of the public authorities, the local authorities, prosecutors’ offices, the courts or companies with armed security.
(3) It shall be forbidden to conduct assemblies:
(a) within fifty metres of the parliament building, the residence of the president of Moldova, the seat of the government, the Constitutional Court and the Supreme Court of Justice;
(b) within twenty-five metres of the buildings of the central administrative authority, the local public authorities, courts, prosecutors’ offices, police stations, prisons and social rehabilitation institutions, military installations, railway stations, airports, hospitals, companies which use dangerous equipment and machines, and diplomatic institutions.
(4) Free access to the premises of the institutions listed in subsection (3) shall be guaranteed.
(5) The local public authorities may, if the organisers agree, establish places or buildings for permanent assemblies.
(1) Not later than fifteen days prior to the date of the assembly, the organiser shall submit a notification to the Municipal Council, a specimen of which is set out in the annex which forms an integral part of this Act.
(2) The prior notification shall indicate:
(a) the name of the organiser of the assembly and the aim of the assembly;
(b) the date, starting time and finishing time of the assembly;
(c) the location of the assembly and the access and return routes;
(d) the manner in which the assembly is to take place;
(e) the approximate number of participants;
(f) the persons who are to ensure and answer for the sound conduct of the assembly;
(g) the services the organiser of the assembly asks the Municipal Council to provide.
(3) If the situation so requires, the Municipal Council may alter certain aspects of the prior notification with the agreement of the organiser of the assembly.”
(1) The prior notification shall be examined by the local government of the town or village at the latest 5 days before the date of the assembly.
(2) When the prior notification is considered at an ordinary or extraordinary meeting of the Municipal Council, the discussion shall deal with the form, timetable, location and other conditions for the conduct of the assembly and the decision taken shall take account of the specific situation.
(6) The local authorities can reject an application to hold an assembly only if after having consulted the police, it has obtained convincing evidence that the provisions of sections 6 and 7 will be breached with serious consequences for society.
(1) A decision rejecting the application for holding an assembly shall be reasoned and presented in writing. It shall contain reasons for refusing to issue the authorisation...
(1) The organiser of the assembly can challenge in the administrative courts the refusal of the local government.”
“In the determination of his civil rights and obligations or of any criminal charge against him, everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal established by law. ...”
“1. Everyone has the right to freedom of peaceful assembly and to freedom of association with others, including the right to form and to join trade unions for the protection of his interests.
2. No restrictions shall be placed on the exercise of these rights other than such as are prescribed by law and are necessary in a democratic society in the interests of national security or public safety, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others. This Article shall not prevent the imposition of lawful restrictions on the exercise of these rights by members of the armed forces, of the police or of the administration of the State.”
I. ADMISSIBILITY OF THE CASE
II. ALLEGED VIOLATION OF ARTICLE 11 OF THE CONVENTION
III. alleged violation of Article 6 § 1 of the Convention
IV. APPLICATION OF ARTICLE 41 OF THE CONVENTION
“If the Court finds that there has been a violation of the Convention or the Protocols thereto, and if the internal law of the High Contracting Party concerned allows only partial reparation to be made, the Court shall, if necessary, afford just satisfaction to the injured party.”
B. Costs and expenses
C. Default interest
FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT UNANIMOUSLY
2. Holds that there has been a violation of Article 11 of the Convention;
(a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicants, within three months from the date on which the judgment becomes final in accordance with Article 44 § 2 of the Convention, the following amounts to be converted into the currency of the respondent State at the rate applicable on the date of settlement:
(i) EUR 3,000 (three thousand euros) in respect of non-pecuniary damage, to be paid to the applicants’ representative, Mr A. Postică, to be held and managed on behalf of Hyde Park;
(ii) EUR 1,000 (one thousand euros) in respect of costs and expenses to be paid to Hyde Park’s representative, Mr A. Postică;
(iii) any tax that may be chargeable on the above amounts;
(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amounts at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points;
Done in English, and notified in writing on 31 March 2009, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.
Lawrence Early Nicolas Bratza