European Court of Human Rights' verdicts binding for CE members

Slovakia's Supreme Court decided in favour of Slovakia’s lower courts on June 13 and against the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. The lower courts fined a journalist Sk15,000 (€440) in 1997 for violating the libel law - despite the fact that the European court ruled last autumn that the Slovak courts had violated Martin Klein's rights as a journalist, the Sme daily reported on June 14.

The courts in Košice found Klein guilty of libel for an article he wrote in the Domino Efekt weekly about Bratislava-Trnava Archbishop Ján Sokol, after the latter had appeared on television in 1997.

"This primate of the first Christian Church (Sokol) has even less virtue than the leader of the worst gypsy string quartet,” Klein wrote. “I can't understand why decent Christians don't leave the organization with such a monster at the helm."

Church organizations sued Klein for defaming the convictions of the faithful. The Košice district court sentenced him in 2000 to pay the aforementioned fine or spend a year in prison. This ruling was later upheld by the Košice regional court.

In March this year, however, Klein received more than Sk380,000 in compensation including legal fees in accordance with the European Court's ruling.

According to the head of the Slovak Supreme Court Office Eva Rupcová, however, "there is no connection between the country's domestic courts and the court in Strasbourg".

Lawyer Jozef Vozár of the State and Law Institute disagrees however, saying that the Strasbourg court's rulings are binding for Slovak courts.

Compiled by Zuzana Vilikovská from press reports
The Slovak Spectator cannot vouch for the accuracy of the information presented in its Flash News postings.

Top stories

Prime Minister Robert Fico

Poll: Smer's popularity falling

IF a general election had been held in mid April, the governing Smer party would still win with 34.7 percent of the vote, but this is down slightly from the month before according to the latest opinion poll carried…

Bratislava for Everyone

Open houses, free events mark start of tourist season

WARM weather invites people to spend more time outdoors and tourism season ceremonially opens with  Bratislava for Everyone, or Open Days of Bratislava, events taking place April 24-26.

Blueprint technique was used often in Slovak tradition

Blueprint in Slovakia

IT IS not rare that an exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue, and sometimes the catalogue lives on after the show ends. But the book Blueprint in Slovakia / Modrotlač na Slovensku takes this to a whole different…

Váhostav-SK is heavily involved in highway construction in Slovakia.

Bailout for Váhostav-SK creditors sails through parliament

AMID a race to pass legislation that would come into effect before construction firm Váhostav-SK meets with creditors April 30, Prime Minister Robert Fico's government passed an overhaul to insolvency laws coupled…