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2017 | 20 | 9-34

Article title

The “living together” argument in the European Court of Human Rights case-law



Title variants

Argument odwołujący się do życia razem (living together) w orzecznictwie Europejskiego Trybunału Praw Człowieka

Languages of publication



This article analyses the three cases where the argument of “living together” was engaged by the ECtHR and accepted as a legal justification for the prohibition of the full-face veils (burqa and niqab): SAS v. France (2014), Belcacemi and Oussar v. Belgium (2017), and Dakir v. Belgium (2017). It analyses the proposed concept of “living together” itself, explaining its content and its development in the French and Belgian contexts. The paper argues that there is a lack of a robust legal analysis sufficient to legitimize this new argument. Finally, it makes the case for more fact-oriented decisions and the need for the Court to engage in evaluating all the knowledge it obtains, including empirical material brought by the third parties’ interventions. This could be beneficial for two reasons: facilitating the application of the proportionality test and protecting the Court itself from dangerous challenges to its authority.
Artykuł analizuje trzy sprawy, w których Europejski Trybunał Praw Człowieka użył argumentu odwołującego się do życia razem (living together), akceptując go jako uzasadnienie dla zakazu zasłaniania twarzy (burqa i niqab): SAS v. France (2014), Belcacemi and Oussar v. Belgium (2017) oraz Dakir v. Belgium (2017). Analizie poddane jest samo pojęcie „życia razem” w celu wyjaśnienia jego znaczenia i rozwoju we francuskim i belgijskim kontekście. Zdaniem Autorki brakuje pogłębionych analiz prawnych, które wystarczająco uzasadniałyby stosowanie tego nowego argumentu. Artykuł zamyka postulat bardziej skrupulatnego uwzględniania okoliczności faktycznych przy podejmowaniu decyzji. Podkreśla się przy tym, że Trybunał powinien w pełniejszym zakresie brać pod uwagę całokształt posiadanych informacji, włączając w to materiał empiryczny dostarczany przez podmioty interweniujące na zasadzie strony trzeciej. Byłoby to korzystne z dwóch powodów: ułatwiałoby zastosowanie testu proporcjonalności oraz chroniłoby Trybunał przed niebezpiecznym podważaniem jego autorytetu.






Physical description


  • Ca’ Foscari University of Venice, Dorsoduro 3246, 30123 Venezia (Italy)
  • Max Planck Institute for the Study of Religious and Ethnic Diversity, Hermann- Föge-Weg 11, 37073 Göttingen (Germany)


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Document Type

Publication order reference


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