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Ždanoka v. Latvia, No. 58278/00, ECtHR (Grand Chamber), 16 March 2006

Type Judgment
Case number 58278/00


Disqualification of a former leading member of Soviet-era Communist party as a parliamentary candidate.

Normative references

Art. 3 Prot. No. 1 ECHR


1. While a restrictive measure may scarcely be considered acceptable in the context of one political system, for example in a country which has an established framework of democratic institutions, it may nonetheless be considered acceptable in view of the historic-political context which led to its adoption and given the threat to the new democratic order posed by the resurgence of ideas which, if allowed to gain ground, might appear capable of restoring the former regime.
2. Democracy constitutes a fundamental element of the “European public order” and the rights guaranteed under Article 3 of Protocol No. 1 are crucial to establishing and maintaining the foundations of an effective and meaningful democracy governed by the rule of law.
(In the present case, the Grand Chamber found that the exclusion of a former member of the dissolved Communist Party of Latvia from standing as a candidate for election to the national parliament and to municipal elections did not infringe Article 3 of Protocol No. 1 ECHR).