EHRM: Verantwoordelijk voor reacties op Facebook-muur van politicus

10-09-2021 Print this page
IEPT20210902, EHRM, Sanchez v France

Uit het persbericht: "The case concerned the criminal conviction of the applicant, at the time a local councillor who was standing for election to Parliament, for incitement to hatred or violence against a group of people or an individual on the grounds of their membership of a specific religion, following his failure to take prompt action in deleting comments posted by others on the wall of his Facebook account.

The Court reiterated that tolerance and respect for the equal dignity of all human beings constituted the foundations of a democratic, pluralistic society. As a result, it could in principle be considered necessary to punish or even prevent all forms of expression which spread, incited, promoted or justified hatred based on intolerance.

The Court emphasised that it attached the highest importance to freedom of expression in the context of political debate and considered that very strong reasons were required to justify
restrictions on political speech and that in the run-up to an election, opinions and information of all kinds should be permitted to circulate freely. In the specific circumstances of the case, however, the Court found that the domestic courts’ decision to convict the applicant on account of his failure to take prompt action in deleting the clearly unlawful comments posted by others on the wall of his Facebook account, which was used in connection with his election campaign, had been based on relevant and sufficient reasons linked to his lack of vigilance and responsiveness. The interference in question could thus be seen as “necessary in a democratic society” and there had been no violation of Article 10 of the Convention."


Lees ook: Ius Mentis