The European Court of Human Rights, which has jurisdiction over more than 46 countries and whose rulings are legally binding on all 27 member states of the European Union, is facing calls to re-examine cases involving Jews after its longest-serving justice was exposed as harboring extremist antisemitic views.
Boštjan Zupančič, who served as a judge on the court between 1998 and 2016, wrote on social media that the Jewish people are “the central enemies of Western civilization,” among other claims, the London-based Jewish Chronicle reported exclusively on Thursday.
The recent remarks, shared on both X (formerly Twitter) and LinkedIn, were first uncovered by the GnasherJew X account.
Zupančič, who has also been a vice president of the UN Committee Against Torture, argued on X that German Jews introduced “sexual perversions of all sorts, sadism, masochism, lots of homosexuality” before Adolf Hitler rose to power and that “millions of German fathers lost their income, fortune and savings because of these Jewish banks gangsters.”
He moreover posted a claim that the “Jewish war on white is behind the arson of the West, and unless Jewish power is named as the cancer, there is not [sic] hope for the white race.”
Cases involving Zupančič include Cha’are Shalom ve Tsedek v. France on the legality of kosher slaughter; PETA Deutschland v. Germany on comparisons between the Holocaust and the treatment of animals; M’Bala M’Bala v. France on antisemitic views and free speech; as well as several lawsuits about the restitution of Jewish property seized by Nazi Germany.
Jonathan Turner, chief executive of UK Lawyers for Israel, told the JC that his organization was looking into “whether any judgments of the European Court of Human Rights in which Boštjan Zupančič participated should be reconsidered.”
Meanwhile, the conservative European Centre of Law and Justice think tank, which has come out in support of Israel, removed Zupančič from their fellowship program following the JC’s exposé. “There should be no room for antisemitism, especially within human-rights institutions,” said director Gregor Puppinick, adding that Zupančič’s “reputation was high at the court.”
Zupančič was also temporarily locked out of his X account this week on the grounds that his posts breached the platform’s rules against hateful conduct.
The European Court of Human Rights, based in Strasbourg, considers alleged state violations of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Judgments are binding and state parties to the convention are obliged to execute them.