Human Rights

As defined by its constitution, one the objects of the ECBA is to promote the administration of justice and human rights under the rule of law within the member states of the Council of Europe and among the peoples of the world. Throughout the years the ECBA has been following Criminal Proceedings’ Human Rights’ issues.

If you know of any issue that should be brought to our attention, please do not hesitate to contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

The increasing involvement of the ECBA in advocacy for Human Rights in Criminal Proceedings has led the ECBA to appoint a Human Rights Officer (HRO). The Human Rights Officer (HRO) will be the contact person for Human Rights’ issues, including  possible interventions by the ECBA before the ECtHR, and will represent the ECBA in activities such as trial observations.

The first ECBA-HRO was the Advisory Board Member Scott Crosby. Scott was a long time member of the ECBA and had a wide experience in taking cases to the European Court of Human Rights. As Scott Crosby sadly passed away on 25 April 2020, Alexis Anagnostakis has been appointed by the Executive Committee of the ECBA as the actual HR Officer on 21 September 2020. 

Given that the demands of human rights law for the work of the ECBA were steadily increasing and could not be adequately met by the Human Rights Officer alone the Executive and Advisory boards of the ECBA decided at the meeting of 21 April 2017 in Prague, Czech Republic, to establish a human rights committee.

The Human Rights Committee (HRC) comprise the undernoted persons:

Nicola Canestrini   Tomasz Kodrzycki
Vânia Costa Ramos   Ondrej Laciak
Walter De Agostino   Mihai Mares
Marius Dietrichson   Ales Michalevic
Paul Garlick   Jonathan Mitchell
Thomas Garner   Rebecca Niblock
Sergey Golubok   Luzia Prata Cordeiro
Robin Grey   Kevin Roberts
Omar Hegazi   Sylvain Savolainen
Maria Hessen Jacobsen   Alex Tinsley
Nancy Hollander    


The ECBA “Scott Crosby” Human Rights Award 

The ECBA and their Human Rights Committee have decided to institutionalize the ECBA Human Rights Award, named after our late friend and passionate human rights activist Scott Crosby, to be awarded once a year to distinguished lawyers who have demonstrated outstanding commitment and sacrifice to uphold fundamental values.

The objective of the ECBA is to honour the efforts of lawyers and at the same time raise awareness of the core values of the legal profession. The receivers of the ECBA Human Rights Award 2020 are Judge Igor Tuleya and the Dean of the Warsaw Bar Association, lawyer Mikołaj Pietrzak, both from Poland.

HR Officer Alexis Anagnostakis, ECBA Chair Vincent Asselineau and Polish lawyer Mikołaj Pietrzak

The ECBA Human Rights Committee co-signs a Statement regarding the Day of the Endangered Lawyer, which is commemorated every year on 24 January.

This year, for the second time, the Day of the Lawyer in Danger is dedicated to Colombia, where the persecution of lawyers continues, preventing them from exercising their profession.

According to  reports,  more than 700 lawyers have been killed in the previous ten years and more than 4,400 have suffered different types of aggression. Between January 2019 and April 2021, 6 homicides, 26 threats, 12 attacks, 3 victims of legal proceedings and one exile among judicial professionals have been recorded.   

Lawyers and human rights defenders are particularly at risk when representing clients in cases related to environmental law, land restitution and the Special Court for Peace.

We urge the international community to strengthen the protection of lawyers and human rights defenders in accordance with the international law and values.

The ECBA Human Rights Committee decided to submit a Request for leave to intervene before the UN Human Rights Committee as a third party  in the case Kokorev  v. Spain, Application No 3954/2021. 

The case refers to  the issues of arbitrary detention in breach of specialty, excessive pre-trial detention in connection with ineffective review of detention, secret/ ineffective access to the case files etc. The ECBA’s contribution aims  to assist the Committee in preserving the practical effectiveness of such standards in the face of the fundamental rights threats.

22 December 2021