Disinfo: ECHR refused to punish Russia over the capture of Ukrainian sailors


The European Court of Human Rights “refused to take restrictive measures against Russia” in connection with the seizure of Ukrainian ships together with the crew in the Kerch Strait on 25 November 2018. The arguments of the Ukrainian authorities and the submissions did not convince the ECHR of the need to satisfy the stated requirements


A misleading spin on ECHR procedures.

On 4th December, the ECHR issued an interim measure, that Russia should "ensure proper medical treatment for those imprisoned Ukrainian naval officers in need, including those who were wounded", in response to a case bought by Ukraine.

More recently, the Ukrainian side appealed to the European Court of Human Rights on February 15 2019, when it provided the ECHR with additional information on the health of three wounded sailors. Ukraine insisted that the transfer of military personnel to the Moscow "Lefortovo" SIZO was premature and called into question the provision of medical services to the wounded. Ukraine requested that the Court instruct Russia transfer the military back to medical facilities. In response, the ECHR stressed that this petition was in line with Ukraine’s petition from November 2018, and accordingly covered by the guidelines on provisional measures under Rule 39 provided by the European Court December 4, 2018. 

Moreover, the European Court of Human Rights refused the Russian Ministry of Justice applications (December 10 and 19, 2018) to cancel the interim measures and confirmed the effect of the measures under Rule 39.



  • Reported in: Issue 139
  • DATE OF PUBLICATION: 22/02/2019
  • Language/target audience: Russian
  • Country: Russia, Ukraine
  • Keywords: Azov sea


Cases in the EUvsDisinfo database focus on messages in the international information space that are identified as providing a partial, distorted, or false depiction of reality and spread key pro-Kremlin messages. This does not necessarily imply, however, that a given outlet is linked to the Kremlin or editorially pro-Kremlin, or that it has intentionally sought to disinform. EUvsDisinfo publications do not represent an official EU position, as the information and opinions expressed are based on media reporting and analysis of the East Stratcom Task Force.

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