Strasbourg 3 September 2013 - Sixty years ago, on the 3 September 1953, the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, better known as the “European Convention on Human Rights”, entered into force. This treaty is undoubtedly the cornerstone of the human rights protection in Europe. Over sixty years, persons within the jurisdiction of the member States of the Council of Europe have benefited from this unique legal instrument. Several landmark judgments of the European Court of Human Rights, guardian of the Convention, have helped to significantly strengthen the rule of law and democracy across the European continent.
As Pierre-Henri Teitgen, one of the founding fathers of the European Convention, pointed out more than sixty years ago, democracies do not go bad in one day; nor can rule of law be put in place overnight. The promotion of human rights is an ongoing process and it is our common responsibility to ensure that the European Convention remains the effective constitutional instrument of European public order that it has become over the years.
That is why the Armenian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe highly values the recent adoption of Protocols No. 15 and 16 to the Convention, which reinforce the ability of the Court to deal with incoming cases and strengthen application of the Convention at national level. No less than 22 member States have signed Protocol No. 15 since its opening for signature at the end of June. The opening for signature of Protocol No. 16 on 2 October will be another important step.
The Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe will continue to do its utmost to ensure that the rights enshrined in the Convention are respected and protected across Europe.