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Hungary: Court suspends examination of more than 6800 inadequate detention conditions complaints

Human rights judges have suspended their examination of complaints against Hungary over detention conditions, it has been announced.

A statement published today from the European Court of Human Rights reads: “On 8 November 2016 the European Court of Human Rights examined the situation of the pending applications brought before it concerning conditions of detention in Hungary. Such applications currently stand in excess of 6,800.

In its pilot judgment of 10 March 2015 (Varga and Others v. Hungary, nos. 14097/12, 45135/12, 73712/12, 34001/13, 44055/13, and 64586/13) the European court concluded that Hungary had to take measures to improve the problem of widespread overcrowding in its prisons.

Having regard to the ensuing legislation adopted by the Hungarian Parliament on 25 October 2016 as well as to the currently on-going examination by the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe of the Hungarian Government’s related Action Plan (DH-DD(2016)1223), the court noted that new domestic remedies are being introduced in Hungary concerning this problem which may be capable of redressing the grievances of the applicants in the cases pending before it.

In light of this development, the court found it appropriate to suspend the examination of the entirety of these applications, including those of which notice has already been given to the government, until 31 August 2017.

This measure entails that, in this period, no procedural steps of any kind will be taken by the Court in these cases. After the expiry of this time-limit, the applicants will be notified in due course of the further procedure or any decision taken by the court.

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