Welcome!

Welcome to this portal looking at European Fundamental Rights from a global perspective.

It is a well-known fact that there are currently two main sources of European fundamental rights: the European Convention on Human Rights and EU Law with, as its most prominent source, the EU-Charter of Fundamental Rights. However, despite their increasing mutual impact, these two sources are for the most part considered separately and when comparisons are made, they are often confined to specific issues and do not examine those two systems globally.

Yet it is suggested here is that such a global, cross-system approach is highly needed today, because it has become impossible to properly evaluate the impact of the European Convention on Human Rights without also considering how it interacts with EU law, and vice versa. This is especially important for the domestic courts of the EU Member States which frequently have to combine fundamental rights from both sources, for instance in areas such as criminal procedure, migration law or the non bis in idem principle.

This portal is built on such a cross-system approach. It first provides a selection of some recent judgments and documents relating to the activity of the European Court of Human Rights, primarily – but not exclusively – for the purposes of the course on the Leading cases of the European Court of Human Rights which is held every winter term at the German University of Administrative Sciences (Speyer).

This part is complemented, under the ECHR ↔ EU Law tab, by a section devoted to the interplay between the European Convention on Human Rights and EU law. It is composed of a short presentation of the current situation on this score, of answers to some key questions flowing from it and of some recent relevant case law from both European Courts. Any views are expressed here in a strictly personal capacity.

Prof. Johan Callewaert