Human Rights Court Grants Interim Measures for a Prisoner of War in the “Donetsk People’s Republic”

Human Rights Court Grants Interim Measures for a Prisoner of War in the “Donetsk People’s Republic”
Photo by Ulla Smidt-Berner on Flickr


Manon Picard

International Justice and Human Rights Researcher, 

Global Human Rights Defence.

On the 16th of June 2022, the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR or the Court) granted interim measures in the case of Saadoune v. Russia and Ukraine (application no. 28944/22). Brahim Saadoune, the applicant, is a Moroccan citizen who moved to Ukraine in 2019 for his studies. Mr. Saadoune underwent military training in November 2021 and joined the “36th Detached Marine Brigade of the Armed Forces of Ukraine in Mariupol, the Donetsk Region”. On the 13th of April 2022, after the start of Russia’s aggression on Ukraine, the Russian Federation announced that the applicant and his brigade had voluntarily surrendered to the Russian forces in Mariupol. Mr. Saadoune was accused of the following offences: retention of power, participation in an armed conflict, and the promotion of training in terrorist activities. He was sentenced to death in the “Donetsk People’s Republic” on the 9th of June 2022 alongside two British nationals.

The Court indicated to the Government of Russia and of Ukraine that it should, as much as possible under the current conflict, respect Mr. Saadoune’s rights enshrined to him by the European Convention on Human Rights. In addition, the Court indicated the following interim measure to the Government of the Russian Federation: 

“they should ensure that the death penalty imposed on the applicant was not carried out; ensure appropriate conditions of his detention; and, provide him with any necessary medical assistance and medication”. 

Sources and further reading:

European Court of Human Rights. (2022, June 16). European Court grants urgent measures in case of prisoner of war sentenced to death in the so-called “Donetsk People’s Republic”. Press Release – Registrar of the Court. Retrieved on June 20, 2022, from