26 Feb 2020 20:48

Putin backs idea of vesting Russian Constitutional Court with right to assess possible enforcement of int'l court rulings

MOSCOW. Feb 26 (Interfax) - Russian President Vladimir Putin has said that he fully agrees with a proposal of experts to enshrine in the Russian Constitution a clause vesting the Russian Constitutional Court with the right to evaluate the possibility of enforcing the decisions of international legal institutions in Russia.

"I fully agree with you; you are right. This is directly linked to the protection of our sovereignty and thwarting attempts at interference in our domestic affairs," Putin said at a meeting with the working group drafting amendments to the Constitution.

Federation Council Foreign Affairs Committee Chairman Konstantin Kosachyov came up with this initiative. "It is proposed to extend the Constitutional Court's powers, bringing into its competence evaluation of the possibility of enforcing the decisions of not only interstate bodies but also those of foreign courts and courts of arbitration if they are at odds with the foundations of public law and order in Russia," Kosachyov said, adding that there have been quite many such "unlawful decisions" taking place recently.

He cited as an example the recent ruling of The Hague Court of Appeals, which obliged Russia to pay $50 billion to former Yukos shareholders. "The circumstances of the case are quite dubious, the dispute itself is totally beyond the jurisdiction of this court of arbitration, the rulings are apparently politicized, criminal circumstances of creating corresponding capital were not taken into account, nor was the absence of Russia's ratification of the so-called Energy Charter, under which it is being attempted to engage our country in arbitration court proceedings," he said.

"Such destructive decisions will be multiplied in the future and exhaustive constitutional instruments for protecting national interests from such blatant political encroachments will be required," Kosachyov said.