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Russian Parliament Backs Reform Of Human Rights Court


Russia's parliament has backed a long-delayed reform to the European Court of Human Rights.

The State Duma's lower house of parliament in a vote today approved the document with an overwhelming majority of 392 votes in favor and 56 opposed.

Russia is the last of the Council of Europe's 47 members to ratify the document, known as Protocol 14 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The protocol will allow the court to streamline and speed up its work.

Russian citizens account for one-fifth of all applications filed by Council of Europe member states.

Russia had rejected the protocol in 2006. Officials in Moscow often have criticized the Strasbourg-based court, which has ruled numerous times against Moscow, including in many cases linked to the conflict in Chechnya.

Russian officials said they had dropped their opposition after the Council of Europe agreed to a provision stating that a Russian judge would participate in any decisions concerning Russia.

compiled from agency reports