CASE OF MARKOVIĆ v. CROATIA
(Application no. 4469/02)
21 October 2004
This judgment is final but it may be subject to editorial revision.
In the case of Marković v. Croatia,
The European Court of Human Rights (First Section), sitting as a Chamber composed of:
Mr C.L. Rozakis, President,
Mr P. Lorenzen,
Mr G. Bonello,
Mrs F. Tulkens,
Mrs N. Vajić,
Mrs E. Steiner,
Mr K. Hajiyev, judges,
and Mr S. Quesada, Deputy Section Registrar,
Having deliberated in private on 30 September 2004,
Delivers the following judgment, which was adopted on that date:
1. The case originated in an application (no. 4469/02) against the Republic of Croatia lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (“the Convention”) by two Croatian nationals, Mr Ivan Marković and Mr Vladimir Marković (“the applicants”), on 9 January 2002.
2. The applicants were represented by Mr R. Radović, a lawyer practising in Zagreb. The Croatian Government (“the Government”) were represented by their Agent, Ms L. Lukina-Karajković.
3. The applicants complained that the enactment of the Civil Obligations (Amendments) Act 1996 violated their right of access to court guaranteed by Article 6 § 1 of the Convention and their right to an effective remedy guaranteed by Article 13 of the Convention.
4. By a decision of 16 December 2003 the Court declared the applicants’ complaints admissible.
5. On 11 March and on 18 May 2004 the Government and the applicants, respectively submitted formal declarations accepting a friendly settlement of the case.
6. The applicants live in Zagreb.
7. On 28 March 1992 the applicants’ weekend house in Sesvete, Croatia, was blown up by unknown perpetrators.
8. On 9 March 1995 the applicants instituted civil proceedings before the Zagreb Municipal Court (Općinski sud u Zagrebu) seeking damages from the Republic of Croatia for their damaged property.
9. Pursuant to the Civil Obligations (Amendments) Act 1996 (Zakon o izmjeni Zakona o obveznim odnosima, Official Gazette no. 7/1996), the Zagreb Municipal Court stayed the proceedings on 5 April 1996.
10. The proceedings resumed on 20 November 2003 pursuant to the “Damage from Terrorist Acts and Public Demonstrations Act 2003” (Zakon o odgovornosti za štetu nastalu uslijed terorističkih akata i javnih demonstracija, Official Gazette no. 117/2003).
11. On 11 March 2004 the Court received the following declaration signed by the Government’s Agent:
“I declare that, with a view to securing a friendly settlement of the above-mentioned case, the Government of Croatia offer to pay ex gratia EUR 10,000 to Mr Ivan Marković and Mr Vladimir Marković. This sum is to cover any pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage as well as costs and expenses, converted into the national currency on the date of payment and free of any taxes that may be applicable. It will be payable within three months from the date of delivery of the judgment by the Court pursuant to the Article 39 of the European Convention on Human Rights. This payment will constitute the final resolution of the case.
In the event of failure to pay this sum within the said three-month period, the Government undertake to pay, until settlement, simple interest on the amount at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points.
The Government further undertake not to request that the case be referred to the Grand Chamber under Article 43 § 1 of the Convention.”
12. On 18 May 2004 the Court received the following declaration signed by the applicants:
“I note that the Government of Croatia are prepared to pay ex gratia the sum of EUR 10,000 covering pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage as well as costs and expenses, converted into national currency on the date of payment and free of any taxes that may be applicable, to Mr Ivan Marković and Mr Vladimir Marković with a view to securing a friendly settlement of the above-mentioned case pending before the European Court of Human Rights.
The applicants accept the proposal and waive any further claims against Croatia in respect of the facts of this application. The applicants declare that this constitutes a final settlement of the case.
This declaration is made in the context of a friendly settlement which the Government and the applicants have reached.
The applicants further undertake not to request that the case be referred to the Grand Chamber under Article 43 § 1 of the Convention after delivery of the Court’s judgment.”
13. The Court takes note of the agreement reached between the parties (Article 39 of the Convention). It is satisfied that the settlement is based on respect for human rights as defined in the Convention or its Protocols (Article 37 § 1 in fine of the Convention and Rule 62 § 3 of the Rules of Court).
14. Accordingly, the case should be struck out of its list of cases.
FOR THESE REASONS, THE COURT UNANIMOUSLY
1. Decides to strike the case out of the list;
2. Takes note of the parties’ undertaking not to request a rehearing of the case before the Grand Chamber.
Done in English, and notified in writing on 21 October 2004, pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.
Santiago Quesada Christos Rozakis
Deputy Registrar President
MARKOVIĆ v. CROATIA (FRIENDLY SETTLEMENT) JUDGMENT
MARKOVIĆ v. CROATIA (FRIENDLY SETTLEMENT) JUDGMENT