FOURTH SECTION

DECISION

AS TO THE ADMISSIBILITY OF

Application no. 33945/96 
by J.S. and Others 
against Poland

The European Court of Human Rights (Fourth Section), sitting on 23 March 2000 as a Chamber composed of

Mr M. Pellonpää, President
 Mr A. Pastor Ridruejo, 
 Mr L. Caflisch, 
 Mr J. Makarczyk, 
 Mr V. Butkevych, 
 Mr J. Hedigan, 
 Mrs S. Botoucharova, judges
and Mr V. Berger, Section Registrar,

Having regard to the above application introduced with the European Commission of Human Rights on 3 October 1996 and registered on 22 November 1996,

Having regard to Article 5 § 2 of Protocol No. 11 to the Convention, by which the competence to examine the application was transferred to the Court,

Having deliberated, decides as follows:

 

THE FACTS

The applicants, a group of Polish nationals, are represented before the Court by Mr Waldemar Gałuszko, a lawyer practising in Szczecin.

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

1. The first applicant, [J.S.], born in 1931, resides in Szczecin, Poland. On 29 November 1993 he claimed compensation of 84,019,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 1 June 1952 to 27 April 1954 in the formations of forced labour, known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,107.500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period, and 18,900,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees of coal mines had been entitled. On 18 April 1995 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time -barred.

2. [A.B.K.], born in 1927, resides in Brzesko Szczecińskie. On 26 July 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 116,896,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 February 1950 to 10 November 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Construction Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,810,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 9,450,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 14 June 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

3. [L.H.], born in 1932, resides in Szczecin. On 1 December 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 87,672,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 1 April 1953 to 10 May 1955 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,248,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not had and 20,160,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 8 September 1995 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

4. [K.P.], born in 1936, resides in Szczecin. On 17 December 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 56,621,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 26 November 1956 to 15 March 1958 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,248,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not had and 13,020,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 1 February 1995 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred. On 10 August 1995 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s appeal.

5. [J.S.], born in 1930, resides in Szczecin. On 6 October 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 87,672,000  (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 24 November 1950 to 
20 December 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Construction Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,248,000  (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 7,560,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 13 March 1995 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

6[S.T.], born in 1933, resides in Baranisław. On 5 August 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 109,590,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 17 October 1953 to 10 July 1955 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,800,000  (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 25,560,000(old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 21 May 1996 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

7. [P.P.], born in 1937, resides in Szczecin. On 02 August 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 54,795,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 17 February 1958 to 21 May 1959 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 1,405,000  (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 12,600,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled.  On 6 June 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

8. Franciszek Lempach, born in 1928, resides in Szczecin. On 28 October 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 138,443,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 3 April 1950 to 10 November 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 1,250,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period. On 24 June 1995 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

9. [J.P.], born in 1930, resides in Szczecin. On 11 February 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 69,407,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 24 November 1950 to 20 December 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,248,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 7,560,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 12 July 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

10. [S.O.], born in 1931, resides in Szczecin. On 26 July 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 98,631,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 November 1954 to 25 January 1957in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,435,340 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 20,160,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 25 August 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

11. [J.S.], born in 1933, resides in Mechowo. On 11 January 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 94,978,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 23 February 1954 to 27 April 1956 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed 2,388,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 21,420,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 12 May 1995 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

12. [T.S.], born in 1935, resides in Szczecin. On 26 July 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 91,325,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 7 October 1955 to 27 October 1957 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,248,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 20,160,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 7 October 1993 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

13. [M.S.], born in 1928, resides in Police. On 10 July 1995 the applicant claimed compensation of 21,840 (new) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 4 December 1949 to 7 November 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions.  The applicant further claimed for 552,500 (new) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 4,600 (new) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 16 November 1995 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

14. [W.W.], born in 1928, resides in Drezdenko. On 15 August 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 91,325,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 February 1950 to 11 April 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,248,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 20,160,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 23 June 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

15. Ryszard Kuźminski, born in 1935, resides in Szczecin. On 19 July 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 84,019,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 November 1955 to 25 October 1957 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant worked in the coal mine while doing his obligatory military service. The applicant further claimed for 2,107,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 18,900,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 5 July 1996 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

16. [S.K.], born in 1929, resides in Lisowo. On 5 October 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 98,631,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 17 June 1951 to 29 September 1953 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,529,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 22,680,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 17 June 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

17. [M.A.], born in 1931, resides in Maszewo. On 9 November 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 101,188,100 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 26 October 1953 to 21 February 1956 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,292,100 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 20,160,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 6 September 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

18. [E.Z.], born in 1937, resides in Wolin. On 26 July 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 58,448,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 5 November 1957 to 5 February 1959 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,240,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 12,600,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 6 September 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

19. [W.S.], born in 1930, resides in Szczecin. On 20 August 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 91,325,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 29 November 1950 to 20 December 1952 in the formations of forced labour military service as Construction Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,248,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 7,560,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 6 June 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

20. [M.P.], born in 1928 resides in Choszczno. On 14 October 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 116,800,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 February 1950 to 10 November 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Construction Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 13,030,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 10,080,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 14 December 1994 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

21. [E.G.], born in 1927, resides in Szczecin. On 2 December 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 43,838,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 27 April 1949 to 5 April 1950 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 1,124,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken and 10,080,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 11 June 1996 the Szczecin Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

22. [C.K.], born in 1929, resides in Szczecin. In 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 50,364,500 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 18 June 1951 to 8 May 1952 in the formations of forced labour know as Mining Battalions. On 17 February 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim as time-barred.

23. [L.B.], born in 1931, resides in Szczecin. On 24 November 1996 the applicant claimed compensation of 40,185,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 28 January 1955 to 20 December 1955 in the formations of forced labour known as Construction Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 983,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 3,465,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 28 March 1996 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

24. [F.Z.], born in 1928, resides in Szczecin. On 11 April 1994 the applicant claimed compensation of 127,855,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 5 December 1949 to 4 November 1952 in the forced labour formations known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 3,231,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 28,980,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 10 November 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

25. [M.K.], born in 1927, resides in Choszczewo. On 24 June 1996 the applicant claimed compensation of 117,579,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 February 1950 to 11 November 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 30,800,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken and 10,395,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 11 August 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

26. [J.K.], born in1935, resides in Szczecin. On 7 September 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 84,019,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 March 1956 to 18 February 1958 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 2,107,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken and 18,900,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 30 November 1993 the Szczecin Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

27. [S.K.], born in 1930, resides in Szczecin. On 26 July 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 76,713,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 27 March 1951 to 
20 December 1952 in the formations of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 1,967,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 17,640,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 2 December 1993 the Szczecin Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

  

28. [J.M.], born in 1936, resides in Szczecin. On 14 September 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 10,366,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 25 February 1957 to 31 December 1958 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 1,967,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 17,640,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 26 May 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

29. [W.L.], born in 1927, resides in Szczecin. On 26 July 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 58,448,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing his compulsory military service from 10 August 1949 to 21 December 1950 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant further claimed for 1,545,500 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 5,040,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 16 March 1994 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

30. [A.W.], born in 1934, resides in Szczecin. On 3 October 1995 the applicant claimed compensation of 11,856 PLZ (new) from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 16 November 1954 to 28 June 1956 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant worked in the coal mine while doing his obligatory military service. The applicant further claimed for 288 (new) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period and 2,400,000 as an equivalent for in-kind payment in coal to which employees had been entitled. On 31 January 1996 the Warsaw Regional Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

31. [A.B.], born in 1931, resides in Szczecin. On 17 August 1993 the applicant claimed compensation of 100,000,000 (old) PLZ from the State Treasury for forced labour which he had been doing during his compulsory military service from 26 April 1952 to 27 April 1954 in the formation of forced labour known as Mining Battalions. The applicant worked in the coal mine while doing his obligatory military service. The applicant further claimed for 16,800,000 (old) PLZ as an equivalent for holiday, which he had not taken during this period. On 14 December 1993 the Warsaw District Court dismissed the applicant’s compensation claim, considering that it was time-barred.

COMPLAINTS

1. The applicants complain that the courts did not hear any evidence in the proceedings. In particular, they failed to establish when secret military orders of the Ministry of National Defence under which the formations of forced labour had been organised, had entered into force.

They complain that the courts erroneously considered that their claims were time-barred. They submit that the running of the prescription period provided for by the Civil Code should have been stayed as the applicants could not seek compensation in any proceedings during the communist regime.

The applicants argue that the courts failed to consider their arguments that their military service had been effected in conditions which made it tantamount to slavery and had been applied to persons who had been considered as potential enemies of the communist regime.

The applicants further complain that the domestic civil law should provide for special compensation entitlements for them.

They conclude that their right to fair hearing guaranteed by Article 6 of the Convention has been breached.

2. The applicants finally complain that in view of their difficult experience, which they had during their military service, they should be entitled to special social insurance benefits guaranteed by the Act of 1991 on Veterans and Persecuted Persons.

THE LAW

1. The applicants complain that in the proceedings concerning their compensation claim for the alleged forced labour carried out during their compulsory military service their right to a fair hearing guaranteed by Article 6 of the Convention was breached.

a) However, the Court recalls that, pursuant to Article 35 § 1 of the Convention, it can only deal with a matter after exhaustion of domestic remedies and within a period of six months from the date on which the final decision was taken. In order to comply with the rule, normal recourse should be had by an applicant to remedies, which are available and sufficient to afford redress in respect of the breaches alleged (the Aksoy v. Turkey judgment of 18 December 1996, Reports of Judgments and Decisions 1996-VI, pp. 2275-76, §§ 51-52).

The Court observes that the applicants except K.P. have failed to lodge appeals against the first-instance judgments given in their cases with the appellate courts.

It follows that this part of the application must be rejected, in accordance with Article 35 § 4 of the Convention.

b) The Court further notes that the applicant K.P. lodged an appeal against the first-instance court and that the appellate court considered his case on the merits. The Court is therefore of the opinion that the applicant has complied with the requirement of exhaustion of domestic remedies under Article 35 § 1 of the Convention.

Article 6 of the Convention, in so far as relevant, reads:

“1.  In the determination of his civil rights and obligations …everyone is entitled to a fair and public hearing within a reasonable time by an independent and impartial tribunal …”

The Court first recalls that, according to Article 19 of the Convention, its duty is to ensure the observance of the engagements undertaken by the Contracting Parties in the Convention. In particular, it is not its function to deal with errors of facts or law allegedly committed by a national court unless and in so far as they may have infringed rights and freedoms protected by the Convention. Moreover, while Article 6 of the Convention guarantees the right to a fair hearing, it does not lay down any rules on the admissibility of evidence or the way it should be assessed, which are therefore primarily matters for regulation by national law and national courts (see the Schenk v. Switzerland judgment of 12 July 1988, Series A no. 140, p. 29, § § 45 and 46; the Bricmont v. Belgium judgment of 7 July 1989, Series A no. 158, p. 31, § 89; the Garcia Ruiz v. Spain judgment of 21 January 1999, § 28, to be published in the Court’ s official Reports).

The Court finds no indication that the applicant could not properly argue his case or that he was prevented from submitting his arguments to the courts, or that the proceedings were otherwise unfair. In the circumstances of the present case, it cannot conclude that the applicant's action was arbitrarily dismissed. Accordingly, there is no appearance of a violation of the applicant's right to a fair hearing under Article 6 § 1 of the Convention

c) The applicants further complain that the domestic civil law should provide for special compensation entitlements for them.

The Court observes that n the present case, the provisions of civil law do not provide for any special compensation entitlements for persons in situation identical with that of the applicants. In this respect the Court recalls that it is not the function of Article 6 of the Convention to regulate the contents of civil rights and obligations and that, in interpreting Article 6 of the Convention, the Court cannot create substantive rights which have no basis in domestic law (Eur. Comm. HR, no. 20490/92, Dec. 8.3.1994, D.R. 76, p. 90).

It follows that this part of the application is manifestly ill-founded within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 of the Convention.

2. The applicants complain that in view of their difficult experience they should be awarded special entitlements under the social insurance laws.

The Court has examined this complaint under Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 of the Convention which reads:

“Every natural or legal person is entitled to the peaceful enjoyment of his possessions. No one shall be deprived of his possessions except in the public interest and subject to the conditions provided for by law and by the general principles of international law.

The preceding provisions shall not, however, in any way impair the right of a State to enforce such laws as it deems necessary to control the use of property in accordance with the general interest or to secure the payment of taxes or other contributions or penalties.”

The Court first recalls that the making of contributions to a pension fund may, in certain circumstances, create a property right and such a right may be affected by the manner in which the fund is distributed (nos. 40832/98, 40833/98 and 40906/98, Bellet, Huertas and Vialatte v. France, Dec. 27.04.1999 [Third Section]). The Court further recalls that the rights stemming from paying contributions to social insurance systems are pecuniary rights for the purposes of Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 to the Convention (the Gaygusuz v. Austria judgment of 16 September 1996, Reports of Judgments and Decisions 1997, p. 1142, §§ 39-41). However, even assuming that Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 guarantees benefits to persons who have contributed to a social insurance system, it cannot be interpreted as entitling that person to a pension of a particular amount or to any given kind of social insurance benefits (cf., mutatis mutandis, 5849/72, Müller v. Austria, Comm. Report. 1.10.1975, D.R. 3, p. 25; no. 10671/83, Dec. 4.3.1985, D.R. 42, p. 229).

The Court also recalls that Article 1 of Protocol No. 1 aims at securing the peaceful enjoyment of existing possessions but it does not recognise any right to acquire possessions (Eur. Comm. HR, no. 11628/85, Dec. 9.5.1986, D.R. 47, p. 270).

It follows that this part of the application is incompatible ratione materiae with the provisions of the Convention within the meaning of Article 35 § 3 of the Convention.

For these reasons, the Court, unanimously,

DECLARES THE APPLICATION INADMISSIBLE.

Vincent Berger Matti Pellonpää 
 Registrar President

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