Since Russia's accession to the Council of Europe in 1996, its relationship with the organization's institutions, including the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) has not been easy, especially since the ECtHR started issuing judgments in politically salient cases. Despite more than 2,500 rulings of the ECtHR finding Russia in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights and contrary to the expectations of the decision-makers at the time, the compliance gap between the requirements of the Convention and the domestic protection of human rights persists. This chapter concerns Russia's participation in the Convention system explored through the lens of its responses to the adverse judgments of the Strasbourg Court, which over the years have ranged from compliance, in some cases, to open defiance, in others. It is suggested that while Russia's approach in many ways is not unique, the existing mechanism to refuse the execution of a judgment is unprecedented.
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