Application no. 21777/03 
by Sergey Borisovich BABICHEV 
against Russia

The European Court of Human Rights (First Section), sitting on 18 May 2006 as a Chamber composed of:

Mr C.L. Rozakis, President, 
 Mr L. Loucaides, 
 Mrs F. Tulkens, 
 Mrs N. Vajić, 
 Mr A. Kovler, 
 Mrs E. Steiner, 
 Mr K. Hajiyev, judges, 
and Mr S. Nielsen, Section Registrar,

Having regard to the above application lodged on 18 June 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 deliberated, decides as follows:


The applicant, Mr Sergey Borisovich Babichev, is a Russian national who was born in 1963 and lived in the town of Mirnyy of the Sakha (Yakutiya) Republic. The Russian Government (“the Government”) were represented by Mr P. Laptev, the Representative of the Russian Federation at the European Court of Human Rights.

The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.

On 28 November 2002 the Mirninskiy District Court of the Sakha (Yakutiya) Republic granted the applicant’s civil action against the Ministry of Finance and awarded him 138,967 Russian roubles (RUR, approximately 4,407 euros).

On 18 December 2002 the Supreme Court of the Sakha (Yakutiya) Republic upheld the judgment on appeal.

On 18 February 2003 the applicant submitted a writ of execution to the Ministry of Finance.

At the time the application was lodged with the Court the judgment remained unenforced.


The applicant complained under Article 13 of the Convention and Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 about non-enforcement of the judgment of the Mirninskiy District Court of 28 November 2002.


On 22 February 2005 the application was communicated to the respondent Government.

On 8 July 2005 the Government’s observations on the admissibility and merits of the application were received. The Government informed the Court that on 16 December 2004 the judgments of 28 November and 18 December 2002 had been quashed by way of a supervisory review and the applicant’s action had been dismissed.

On 13 July 2005 the applicant was invited to submit written observations in reply by 14 September 2005.

On 5 August 2005 the English version of the Government’s observations was forwarded to the applicant. The time-limit for the submission of the applicant’s observations remained unaffected.

As the applicant’s observations on the admissibility and merits had not been received by 14 September 2005, on 14 November 2005 the applicant was advised by registered mail that the failure to submit observations might result in the strike-out of the application.

As it follows from the advice of receipt which returned to the Court, the letter of 14 November 2005 reached the applicant’s address on 29 November 2005. A postman noted on the advice of receipt that the letter had not been delivered because the applicant had left the town of Mirnyy and his new address was unknown.

The Court recalls Article 37 of the Convention which, in the relevant part, reads as follows:

“1. The Court may at any stage of the proceedings decide to strike an application out of its list of cases where the circumstances lead to the conclusion that

(a) the applicant does not intend to pursue his application;


However, the Court shall continue the examination of the application if respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and the Protocols thereto so requires.”

In that context, the Court also recalls that, pursuant to Rule 47 § 6 of the Rules of Court, “applicants shall keep the Court informed of any change of address and of all circumstances relevant to the application”. Under that Rule, it is incumbent on the applicant to provide at least a minimum of information, namely his postal address, enabling the Court to conduct correspondence with him and to proceed with his petition.

In the present case the applicant failed to inform the Court of the change of his postal address or to indicate any provisional address at which communication with him can be effected. The applicant also could have appointed a representative with whom the Court could have maintained communication while the applicant was not able to respond. Thus the applicant made it impossible for the Court to continue the examination of his case (cf. Konrad v. Poland (dec.), no. 35476/97, 23 October 2001).

The Court infers therefrom that the applicant does not intend to pursue his application. Furthermore, the Court considers that respect for human rights as defined in the Convention and its Protocols does not require it to continue the examination of the case.

In these circumstances it considers that Article 29 § 3 of the Convention should no longer apply to the case and it should be struck out of the list in accordance with Article 37 § 1 (a) of the Convention.

For these reasons, the Court unanimously

Decides to discontinue the application of Article 29 § 3 of the Convention and to strike the application out of its list of cases.

Søren Nielsen Christos Rozakis  
 Registrar President


                                           BABICHEV v. RUSSIA DECISION