A strasbourgi emberi jogi bíróság befogadta tizenöt katyńi áldozat hozzátartozójának az orosz állam elleni kérelmét. A kivégzettek rokonai azt sérelmezték beadványukban, hogy az orosz hatóságok nem folytattak le megfelelő és tényleges vizsgálatot szeretteik meggyilkolásának ügyében (Admissibility decision Janowiec and others v. Russia (application no.s 55508/07 & 29520/09). A bíróság joghatóságával kapcsolatban a következő fontos megállapítást tette:
101. The Court notes that the parties have acknowledged that it has no competence ratione temporis to examine the mass murder of Polish prisoners of war in 1940 from the standpoint of the substantive limb of Article 2 of the Convention. Accordingly, the Court will not have to examine this issue in the instant case. It is, however, in dispute whether or not this fact precludes the Court from taking cognisance of the applicants' complaint under the procedural limb of that provision concerning the allegedly inadequate character of the investigation in so far as it was conducted after the ratification date. The Court considers that the issue of temporal jurisdiction is so closely linked to the merits of the applicants' complaint under Article 2 that a joint examination of these matters would be more appropriate in the circumstances of the present case. Accordingly, it joins the Russian Government's objection as regards the Court's competence ratione temporis to the merits and, having found no other ground for declaring this complaint inadmissible, considers, in the light of the parties' submissions, that it raises serious issues of fact and law under the Convention, the determination of which requires an examination of the merits.
Az EJEB által kiadott sajtóközlemény a következőképp foglalja össze az ügyet:
The 12 men were police and army officers, an army doctor and a primary school headmaster. They were taken to Soviet-run camps and were then killed/presumed killed without trial, along with more than 21,000 others1, in April and May 1940, in
The investigations concerning the victims’ deaths were started in 1990. The criminal proceedings concerning the 12 men in question were discontinued however, because the men’s bodies were not identified during the latest investigations, even though they were listed as prisoners in the relevant camps at the relevant times and the bodies of a number of them had been identified during an exhumation in 1943. The applicants appealed unsuccessfully.
On 26 November 2010 the Russian Duma made a statement about the “Katyń tragedy”, in which it reiterated that the “mass extermination of Polish citizens on USSR territory during the Second World War” had been on Stalin’s orders and that it was necessary to continue “verifying the lists of victims, restoring the good names of those who perished in Katyń and other places, and uncovering the circumstances of the tragedy.”
The Court has declared admissible the applicants’ complaint, under Article 2 (right to life) of the European Convention on Human Rights, that the Russian authorities failed to carry out an adequate and effective criminal investigation into the circumstances leading to and surrounding the deaths of their relatives. However, it joined to its examination of the merits of the complaint the issue of temporal jurisdiction, in other words, whether the Court could examine the adequacy of an investigation into events which had occured before
The Court has also declared admissible the applicants’ complaint that the way the Russian authorities reacted to their requests and applications amounted to ill-treatment under Article 3 (prohibition of inhuman or degrading treatment) of the Convention.