Application no. 10240/03
by Theodoros NIKOLAOU
The European Court of Human Rights (First Section), sitting on 8 June 2006 as a Chamber composed of:
Mr C.L. Rozakis, President,
Mr L. Loucaides,
Mrs F. Tulkens,
Mrs E. Steiner,
Mr K. Hajiyev,
Mr D. Spielmann,
Mr S.E. Jebens, judges,
and Mr S. Nielsen, Section Registrar,
Having regard to the above application lodged on 12 March 2003,
Having regard to the decision to apply Article 29 § 3 of the Convention and examine the admissibility and merits of the case together,
Having regard to the partial decision of 12 January 2006,
Having regard to the parties’ correspondence,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The applicant, Mr Theodoros Nikolaou, is a Cypriot national who lives in Limassol. The applicant represented himself before the Court. The Cyprus Government (“the Government”) were represented by their Agent, Mr P. Clerides, Attorney-General of the Republic of Cyprus.
The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.
The applicant and his daughter were co-owners of a plot of land (plot no. 162/1) in the village Ayios Tychonas in the Amathunda district of Limassol. This plot was classified under the Antiquities Law as being of archaeological importance and was within the ambit of a town planning zone subject to building restrictions. Following a notice of expropriation (No. 124) issued on 29 January 1988, an order of expropriation (No. 1335) was published in the Official Gazette of the Republic of Cyprus on 26 August 1988 pertaining to the applicant’s plot.
The authorities offered the applicant and his daughter the amount of 30,000 Cyprus pounds (CYP) plus interest, as compensation for the expropriation of their property.
On 23 February 1989 the applicant and his daughter lodged a civil action with the Limassol District Court for the assessment of the compensation (action no. 9/89) since they considered that the amount given by the Government did not correspond to the value of their property.
In its judgment of 2 March 2001 the district court dismissed the action and upheld the compensation that had been granted by the Government.
On 6 April 2001 the applicant and his daughter lodged an appeal with the Supreme Court.
On 13 September 2002 the Supreme Court rejected the appeal upholding the first instance judgment and the compensation awarded thereby.
The applicant complained under Article 6 of the Convention about the excessive length of the proceedings before the Cypriot Courts.
By letter dated 3 March 2006 the Government informed the Court that the parties had reached an agreement to settle the case and that the Ministry of Finance of the Republic of Cyprus had approved the terms of the friendly settlement. In accordance with the agreement, the Government would pay the applicant 7,900 Cyprus pounds in full and final settlement of his claim under the Convention, costs and expenses included. By letter dated 4 May 2006 the applicant confirmed the settlement.
The Court takes note of the friendly settlement reached between the parties. It is satisfied that the settlement is based on respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols and finds no public policy reasons to justify a continued examination of the application (Article 37 § 1 in fine of the Convention).
Accordingly, the application of Article 29 § 3 of the Convention to the case should de discontinued and it should be struck out of the list.
For these reasons, the Court unanimously
Decides to discontinue the application of Article 29 § 3 of the Convention;
Decides to strike the application out of its list of cases.
Søren Nielsen Christos Rozakis
NIKOLAOU v. CYPRUS DECISION
NIKOLAOU v. CYPRUS DECISION