Activist’s conviction for hooliganism over ‘obscene’ protest violated Article 10 ECHR

* This blog post was written by Ronan Ó Fathaigh, IVIR/Univ. Amsterdam and Dirk Voorhoof, Human Rights Centre, Ghent University and Legal Human Academy

On 15 January 2019, the European Court’s Second Section unanimously found that an anti-corruption activist’s conviction for staging an “obscene” demonstration outside a prosecutor’s office, targeting a number of public officials, violated the activist’s freedom of expression. The Court in Mătăsaru v. the Republic of Moldova took the Moldovan courts to task for holding that Article 10 of the European Convention was not applicable to the activist’s protest, with the European Court reiterating that “expressive conduct” which shocks, offends or disturbs is fully protected …read more