Application no. 8333/05
by Yevgeniya STARSHOVA and Aleksey STARSHOV
The European Court of Human Rights (First Section), sitting on 8 September 2005 as a Chamber composed of:
Mr C.L. Rozakis, President,
Mr P. Lorenzen,
Mrs S. Botoucharova,
Mr A. Kovler,
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 7 January 2005,
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 observations submitted by the respondent Government and the observations in reply submitted by the applicants,
Having deliberated, decides as follows:
The applicants, Ms Yevgeniya Vasilyevna Starshova and Mr Aleksey Sergeyevich Starshov, are Russian nationals who were born in 1959 and 1980, respectively, and live in the town of Velikiye Luki. They are represented before the Court by Ms E. Velikokhatskaya, a lawyer practising in St. Petersburg. The applicants are mother and son.
The facts of the case, as submitted by the parties, may be summarised as follows.
On 29 October 2001 the Velikiye Luki Town Court granted the applicants’ action against the State company “St. Petersburg–Vitebsk Division of the Oktyabrskaya railways” (Государственное унитарное предприятиe «Санкт-Петербург–Витебское отделение Октябрьской железной дороги») for free housing. The court ordered that the company:
“...provide Starshova Yevgeniya Vasilyevna and Starshov Aleksey Sergeyevich, whose family comprises two members, with housing premises that meet sanitary and technical requirements, taking into consideration the living standards established by law. ”
On 20 December 2001 the Pskov Regional Court upheld the judgment on appeal.
At the time the application was lodged with the Court the judgment remained unenforced.
On 18 May 2005 the applicants signed a settlement agreement with the public company “Russian railways” (oткрытое акционерное общество «Российские железные дороги»). The applicants received 25,500 euros in compensation for pecuniary and non-pecuniary damage.
The applicants complained under Articles 6, 8 and 13 of the Convention about non-enforcement of the judgment of the Velikiye Luki Town Court of 29 October 2001.
On 8 June 2005 the Court received from the Government a copy of the declaration signed by the applicants and addressed to the European Court of Human Rights. Its relevant part, as translated from Russian, read as follows:
“We, Starshova Yevgeniya Vasilyevna and Starshov Aleksey Sergeyevich,... inform the European Court of Human Rights about our decision to withdraw our application because the dispute has now been settled.
Under Article 37 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms we request the European Court of Human Rights to discontinue the proceedings in respect of our application.”
In the letter the Government affirmed that a settlement had been reached with the applicants.
On 9 June 2005 the applicants were invited to submit their comments on the Government’s letter.
On 1 July 2005 the Court received the original declaration from the applicants. Annexed were copies of financial documents showing that the specified amount had been transferred to the applicants’ account.
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.”
The Court notes that the applicants do not intend to pursue their 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
STARSHOVY v. RUSSIA DECISION
STARSHOVY v. RUSSIA DECISION