EUROPEAN COURT OF HUMAN RIGHTS, URGENT REQUEST FOR INTERIM MEASURES IN ACCORDANCE WITH RULE 39 OF THE ECHR, IRINA ANTONOVA vs. FINLAND
Rule 39 - Urgent/Article 39 – Urgent
Contact person: Johan BÄCKMAN
Removal expected on: 16 June 2010, to Russia
European Court of Human Rights
Council of Europe
Fax: +33 3 88 41 39 00
On behalf of the applicants Irina Antonova, Natalia Käärik and Ari Laitanen-
Fax +33 388 17 99 12
The applicants respectfully request to adopt interim measures against Finland in accordance with Rule 39 of the Rules of Court.
I. Background of request
Irina Antonova, citizen of Russian Federation, born in 1928, in 2008 moved from Vyborg (Russia) to Helsinki to her daughter Natalia Käärik, citizen of Russia and Finland, after Antonova’s health seriously worsened. Since then, Antonova has lived in Helsinki with her daughter, who has lived in Finland for already 20 years, and son-in-law, citizen of Finland Ari Laitanen. Käärik and Laitanen have together taken care of Antonova, who is seriously ill and paralysed, unable to walk, spending her days in bed, and occasionally in a wheel-chair.
Finnish authorities have made several decisions of deporting Antonova to Russia, because according to Finnish law, Antonova is not a close relative to her daughter, and therefore, cannot obtain a residence permit. The following decisions have been made in the case of Antonova’s deportation: 1) 27.10.2009 Immigration Service denied her the residence permit and ordered her deportation; 2) 21.9.2009 Helsinki Administrational Court confirmed the decision; 3) 8.3.2010 Supreme Administrational Court did not take the case into consideration; 4) 26.3.2010 Immigration Service confirmed the decision on deportation.
According to the decisions, Antonova is very ill, but she can get proper treatment also in Russia. However, according to statement by a psychiatrist Olli Siipola of 12.3.2010, Antonova’s deportation would be fatal for her health. Also due to her mental condition, Antonova is not fully aware, what is happening around her. Antonova is fully dependent of her family and her deportation will mean her isolation from the close relatives and would cause serious damage for her mental and physical health.
The Finnish authorities unofficially stopped the deportation in March 2010, allegedly to wait for changes in the Finnish immigration legislation. The police chief of Finland Mikko Paatero said he personally stopped the deportation for a period of time. However later, Paatero said, he cannot amend the deportation decision, because the Finnish parliament has not changed the law. The Migration Police has planned to deport Antonova already three times, without success. The police are also in a difficult position, because they are practically not able to deport Antonova due to her health condition, but they have to.
II. Alleged violations
The applicants allege that Finland has violated Articles 3 and 8 of the Convention in the case.
III. Request for interim measures
If Antonova is deported from Finland, it would be impossible to reverse the situation, even if the Court later finds violations of the Convention in the case. Thus, there is an imminent risk of irreparable damage. The applicants respectfully request to adopt interim measures against Finland in accordance with Rule 39 of the Rules of Court and order Finland to suspend deportation of Irina Antonova for the duration of the proceedings before the Court.
1. Power of Attorney.
2. Decision by the Immigration Service.
3. Decision by the Helsinki Administrational Court.
4. Decision by the Supreme Administrational Court.
5. Statement by a psychiatrist.
Helsinki, 15 June 2010