MOSCOW, June 7 (RAPSI) – The Committee of Ministers (COM) of the Council of Europe reiterated its invitation to Russia to present a comprehensive plan of action for its execution of a 2010 European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) judgment accusing Russia of having violated the free assembly rights of the applicant by denying requests by gay rights activists to hold public events.

The decision was issued in the aftermath of a meeting which was held by the Council of Ministers for purposes of examining the implementation of ECHR judgments.

Although Alekseyev v. Russia was originally rendered in 2010, it entered into force in 2011. The ECHR held that Russia had violated numerous aspects of the European Convention on Human Rights (Convention) by refusing to sign off on various Moscow gay pride events.

The COM expressed concern with the Moscow authorities’ persistent refusal to authorize public events planned by applicant Nikolai Alekseyev, a gay-rights campaigner, adding that these persistent refusals allow the conditions that gave rise to the ECHR judgment to remain as they are.

Initiatives that had been undertaken in order to raise the awareness of local authorities, but according to the decision, training and awareness-raising activities have done little to chip away at the number of refusals to authorize similar events.

Accordingly, the COM reiterated its calls for Russian authorities to present a comprehensive game plan for its execution of the Alekseyev judgment, outlining measures aimed at ensuring the propriety of security-risk assessments, clarifying and harmonizing the relevant Russian law, and ensuring coherence of domestic judicial practices regarding disputes arising from the organization of public events.