CoE Committee of Ministers urges Bulgaria to allow registration of Macedonian minority associations


Interim Resolution CM/ResDH(2020)197 of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers, released on Friday, referring to the execution of the judgments of the European Court of Human Rights on “United Macedonian Organisation Ilinden and Others group against Bulgaria”, the Bulgarian authorities are exhorted to ensure that any new registration request of “UMO Ilinden” or associations similar to “UMO Ilinden”, is examined in full compliance with Article 11 of the Convention, as regards formal legal requirements that must be applied in a proportionate, foreseeable and consistent manner, with clear instructions to applicants if needed, and also as regards the assessment of the lawfulness of the association’s goals and the means for pursuing them.

Bulgaria is also urged to adopt legislative or other appropriate measures to ensure broader and more effective obligation for the Registration Agency to give instructions to associations to rectify registration files, whenever this is objectively possible, so as to reconcile the Agency’s practice of strict application of formal requirements with the effective exercise of the right to freedom of association.

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