Konstantin Markin v Russia
Case No. 30078/06
Judgment date: 07/10/10
The applicant is a Russian national and military serviceman. Subsequent to his divorce on 30 September 2005, the applicant’s two children (including a newborn baby) were to live with him. On 11 October 2005, the applicant requested three years’ paternity leave, but this was rejected on the grounds that the three-year leave could only be granted to servicewomen. Instead the applicant was granted his entitlement to three months’ parental leave; however, on 23 November 2005, he was recalled to duty.
Further to unsuccessful applications to the Military Court of the Pushkin Garrison and the Military Court of the Leningradskiy Command, in October 2006 the head of the applicant’s military unit granted the applicant parental leave until September 2008 and 200,000 RUB financial aid, in view of his difficult family situation. However, this decision met with strong criticism from the Military Court of the Pushkin Garrison.
The applicant, unsuccessfully, took his case to the Constitutional Court (CC) where he challenged the incompatibility of the provisions of the Military Service Act concerning the three-year parental leave with the principle of equality between men and women as guaranteed by the Constitution. The CC declared that the limitation imposed on servicemen in respect of parental leave was in recognition of the negative effect it would otherwise have on the fighting power and operational effectiveness of the armed forces and that the provision was compatible with the Constitution.
The applicant brought claims to the ECtHR under Art. 8 (right to private and family life) and Art. 14 (prohibition of discrimination).
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