Assessing Human Rights in Russia: Not to Miss the Wood for the Trees A Response to Preclik, Schönfeld and Hallinan
Looking fourteen years into the past, Russia has made the enormous progress in reforming its legal system in order to ensure human-rights protection under the Convention. This process of reform has not been finished; it is ongoing. The causes of the existing hardships in the area of human-rights protection are better explained in terms of difficulties with implementation of standards into the Russian legal system rather than any antagonism between Russian and European human-rights attitudes. There are several groups of violations of the ECHR that need to be analyzed separately because of the different nature of the problems. Some of them reflect structural and practical problems of the Russian legal system immanent in a transition period of reforms and of the dismantling of old regulations and attitudes, others may be accounted for by the lack of proper (efficient, adequate and balanced) measures and solutions to address the numerous new challenges that Russian society is facing after the collapse of the Soviet Union. There are many examples evidencing that Russia is trying to accommodate its legal and political system to the requirements of the Convention.