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ECHR 'Interim measures' ruling on Belarus border revoked

An interim ruling by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) regarding the provision of humanitarian aid to people attempting to enter Latvia from the Belarus border, has been revoked just hours before it was due to lapse in any case, Foreign Minister Edgars Rinkēvičs indicated on social media.

"We have received news from the European Court of Human Rights that, after reviewing the information provided by the Latvian government, the court has revoked the interim settlement in this case," Rinkēvičs wrote on Twitter.

The case in question is an interim ruling by the ECHR on August 25 which requested the Latvian and Polish authorities "to provide all the applicants with food, water, clothing, adequate medical care and, if possible, temporary shelter." The applicants were Kurdish Iraqis who had attempted to enter Latvia and Poland from Belarus "allegedly with a view to seeking international protection".

The interim ruling was due in any case to lapse at the end of September 15 and "noted that this decision was taken in accordance with the fact that Contracting States have the right, as a matter of well-established international law and subject to their treaty obligations, including the Convention, to control the entry, residence and expulsion of aliens."

The lifting of the interim measures was confirmed by the court in a press release September 15 which said:

The European Court of Human Rights has today decided to lift interim measures in the case Ahmed and Others v. Latvia (application no. 42165/21), which concerned recent events at the border of Latvia with Belarus.

The applicants in the case – 41 Kurdish-ethnic Iraqi nationals – were attempting to enter Latvia, allegedly with a view to seeking international protection.

The Court previously indicated interim measures in their case on 25 August 2021, requesting that the Latvian authorities provide the applicants with food, water, clothing, adequate medical care and, if possible, temporary shelter. Those measures expire on 15 September 2021.

A total of 11 of the group (six adults and five children), have been admitted onto Latvian territory for
humanitarian reasons, in the main for health problems and the fact that some are minors. The other
applicants no longer appear to be at or near the border zone.

Measures under Rule 39 of the Rules of Court are decided in connection with proceedings before the
Court, without prejudging any subsequent decisions on the admissibility or merits of the case. The
Court grants such requests only on an exceptional basis, when the applicants would otherwise face a
real risk of irreversible harm. 

However, the press release makes no mention of the similar applications to Poland. The original ruling can be read via the link below or the attached document.


Interim measures Poland-Latvia-Belarus border.pdf


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