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Ministers Westerwelle and Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger to open exhibition on European human rights protection

26.10.2010

Federal Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle, Federal Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger and Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Thomas Hammarberg will open an exhibition at the Federal Foreign Office at 11.00 h on 27 October 2010 entitled “60 Years of the European Convention on Human Rights – 60 Years of European Human Rights Protection for Germany”.

The exhibition, which is curated by the Council of Europe, consists of a series of large panels mounted on a spectacular wooden construction and displaying photographs and texts illustrating the human rights protected by the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR).

The exhibition is designed as a tribute to the European Convention on Human Rights, which Germany signed on 4 November 1950. The Convention guarantees a wide range of human rights. For the first time in the history of international law, it entitles citizens to direct protection if their rights under the Convention have been violated. By enabling them to take their case to the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg, the Convention laid the basis for effective human rights protection in Europe. Today over 800 million people in 47 countries across Europe can invoke the rights guaranteed by the Convention and do so in great number. Every year the Court receives some 50,000 complaints about human rights violations. In recent years the Court has handed down a number of much acclaimed rulings on cases relating to Germany, on the custodial rights of unmarried fathers, for example, the duration of court proceedings, preventive detention and canon law in the field of employment. Germany always transposes these rulings meticulously into domestic law and practice.

Practical note:To attend the opening no accreditation is required. The exhibition will be on show until 4 November 2010 in the Atrium of the Federal Foreign Office, Werderscher Markt 1, 10117 Berlin. Opening hours for the public are Monday to Friday, 8.00 – 20.00 h, entrance is free.

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