Doina Ioana Străisteanu

Doina Ioana provides legal advice and representation in domestic law procedures, as well as within the procedures of the European Court of Human Rights, special procedures of the UN Committees and Council of Europe. She continuesly reprezents victims of human rights violations, in particular individuals that claims to have had their civil and political rights violated (unlaful deprivation of life, ill-treatment, unlawful detention, unfair trial, discrimination and others).  She has extensive experience in representation of applicants and oral pleading before the European Court for Human Rights on issues of security and rule of law and women human rights. Among most prominent cases from Court’s jurisprudence that had benefitted from her input are the case of Bazorkina v Russia, judgment of 8 December 2005 on disappearance and detention incommunicado in the context of Russian-Chechen conflict of 1998-2008; the case of Corsacov v. Moldova judgment of  6 April 2006 on recognition of falakka practice as torture, the case of Dunaev v. Russia currently pending on issues of civil rights protection after the Chechen conflict, Gutu v. Moldova judgment of 13 June 2007 on using administrative proceedings to curtail criminal investigation; the case of Moldovan School in Transnistria currently pending, Catan and 27 Others v. Moldova and Russia, on prohibition of discriminatory ill-treatment and access to education; the case of Colibaba v Moldova, judgement of 2007 on the infringement of the right to individual petition; the case of D. and N. v. Moldova, currently pending on States’ positive obligations to ensure witness’ protection in sensitive cases; the case of I.G. v Moldova, currently pending on gender discrimination of victims of rape, failure of criminal justice system to protect women from sexual violence by demanding evidence of corroborative evidence of physical resistance and past sexual history evidence; the case of Nikiforova v Russia, currently pending on States’ positive obligation to protect women against sexual harassment at the workplace; the case of Sabanchiyeva and Others v Russia, currently pending on prohibition of discrimination on the basis of the applicants religious beliefs and unlawful interference with the applicants’ private life by refusing to retun the bodies of Chechen combatant to families for burial; the case of Maskhadova and Others v Russia, currently pending on unlawful deprivation of life, ineffective investigation into the circumstances if his death, non return of his body to the family for burial, discrimination on religious ground; the case of A.B.C. v Ireland, currently pending hearing before the European Court scheduled for 9 December 2009 on refusal to perform abortion at woman’s request that put her life and health at an increased, unnecessary risk; the case of Shioshvili v Russia and Georgia, currently pending, on ill-treatment of a pregnant woman and her 4 minor children during mass deportation of Georgian nationals from Russia in autumn 2006; the case of Gegidze v Georgia, Communication pending before the UN CEDAW Committee on state’s due diligence obligations to protect women from violence of their intimate partner and recognition of domestic violence as torture; the case of Amirov  and Amirova v Russia, Communication no. 1447/2006 lodged before the UN Human Rights Committee, view issued on 22 April 2009 on unlawful deprivation of life of a pregnant woman and States’ failure to conduct an effective investigation; the case of Beauty Solomon v Spain, currently pending, on intersectional discrimination: gender and race and ill-treatment; the case of Opuz v Turkey, judgement of 9 June 2009 on State’s due diligence to protect women from domestic violence which constitute a form of discrimination; the case of Rantsev v Cyprus and Russia, currently pending on States positive obligations to prevent trafficking of women for sexual exploitation, the case is pending; the case Baysakov v Ukraine currently pending on prohibition of extradition of the individual facing flagrant denial of justice in the Receiving State; the case of Ernest Vardanean, Ilie Cazac, Iurie Matcenco and Boris Moser all represented before the Court in individual applications against Moldova and Russia for unlawful deprivation of liberty by the separatist regime in Transnistria.

Human Rights Lawyer and Expert, Chișinău, Moldova

Has developed partnerships with human rights organisations in Moldova, Ukraine, Russia and Georgia in the field of strategic litigation before the European Court. The forcus of her work is primarily on promoting human rights and protection of women against violence, prevention of discriminatory ill-treatment and issues of security and rule of law.

Provides legal advice and representation to individuals seeking protection against discrimination on grounds of gender, sexual orientation, race and disability. In Moldova has partnered with GenderDoc-M, Promo-LEX, La Strada and National Roma Center in this regard.

Lawyer, Europe Program Interights, London, United Kingdom (3 January 2007 – 16 October 2009)

Provided legal advice and assistance to lawyers and NGOs from Central and Eastern Europe, former Soviet Union States on relevant international and comparative law standards on issues of Violence against Women and Security and Rule of Law. Have assisted applicants and their representatives before the regional courts in strategically significant cases and submitted briefs of amicus curiae to international and regional courts. Have designed, planed and delivered capacity building workshops (among which on Litigating Cases of Human Trafficking before the European Court, Arbitrary Detention and Ill-treatment; States Positive Obligations for Private Parties violating human rights; Strategic Litigation of Cases of Domestic Violence, Sexual Violence, Sexual Harassment and Human Trafficking, Diplomatic Assurances and Non-Refoulement). Have provided expertise at internal and external training workshops on relevant international and comparative law and prepared legal information on relevant human rights issues through publications, the worldwide web and other means to a variety of audiences.

Have also acted as Trade Union representative for Interights staff members. Have consulted staff members on issues related to their employment agreement (notice period, maternity leave, salary scale, appraisals, etc), provided feedback to the management on issues directly affecting staff members (promotion criteria, award of cost of living percent to the salary, changes to the job descriptions, etc.) and took part in Staffing Committee to voice the views of staff members on issues that concern their welfare.

Legal Director, Dutch NGO “Stichting Russian Justice Initiative”, Moscow, Russia (4 April 2005 – 29 December 2006)

Have developed litigation strategies for cases lodged before the European Court for Human Rights (which includes meeting with applicants, building a case file of evidence, testimonies, witness statements, etc; submitting inquires and appeals to Russian domestic bodies in order to exhaust domestic remedies). Managed an independent caseload of approximately 120 cases lodged before the European Court of Human Rights regarding human rights violations in Chechnya; Drafted applications, applicant’s observations on Governmental Memorandums, applicant’s additional observations on decision of admissibility, applicants just satisfaction claims and other legal documents and letters to European Court in litigated cases; Organized and reviewed the work of 5 lawyers and 3 legal assistants and organized continues professional development of the staff lawyers and legal assistants;

Director of Advocacy and Monitoring for Human Rights Program, Moldovan Helsinki Committee for Human Rights, Chisinau Republic of Moldova (1 October 2001 – 31 December 2004)

Have been responsible for the fundraising and program development for all 8 fields of action within the Program: disabled children’s rights; minority rights; refugees and asylum seekers rights; prevention of torture; HR in Transnistrian region; freedom of speech and mass media; monitoring of election; social, economic and cultural rights; Have led and advised the lawyers of the Program selection and litigation of cases, representation before national courts and European Court for Human Rights; Represented the Program and Moldovan Helsinki Committee at international meetings, forums and conferences regarding human rights situation in Moldova and Transnistria; Developed partnerships with national NGO’s, mass media, international organizations and experts. (ex. Council of Europe experts in prevention of torture and minority rights, Amnesty International, CPT, UN CAT, UN CEDAW, UN High Commissioner for HR, UN CESCR, Polish Foundation Education for Democracy, Polish Foundation for Human Rights, ABA CEELI in Moldova, European Commission Delegation in Moldova, SIDA (or ASDI), CORDAID, Soros Foundation Moldova, High state officials and deputies of Moldova, etc.; Have written annual reports on human rights situation in Republic of Moldova and Transnistria, Shadow Reports on Moldovan Government Report to United Nations bodies on prevention of torture (2003), on economic, social and cultural rights (in 2003) and on civil and political rights in (2002), on human Rights in Transnistria ( 2004);

Legal Advisor, Moldovan Helsinki Committee for Human Rights, Chisinau, Moldova (11 December 2000 – 31 September 2001)

Provided legal assistance to victims of human rights violations from vulnerable strata of society; represented clients before domestic courts; Monitored extensively the cases of human rights violations in fact-finding missions and court trials

Internship, Buiucani Court of Justice, Chisinau, Republic of Мoldova (May – September 2000)

Responsible for the records of the cases examined by the judge; Received the complaints from the citizens and penal cases from the Public Prosecutor; Kept the records and verbatim of judicial sessions;


Academy for Public Administration of the President of Republic of Moldova,

Master degree in management of non governmental sector and advocacy (strategic planning, human resources management, project planning, fundraising, leaderships, Action Plans, etc.), 1 October 2002 – 31 June 2003

Abo Academy University, Finland

Diploma awarded by the Institute for Human Rights in Finland for passed exam of the course “International Protection of Human Rights”, 25 February – 8 March 2002

State University of the Republic of Moldova Chisinau, Faculty of Law,

Bachelor degree in international law, licensed in law, 1 September 1996 – 31 June 2001

Professional Qualifications:

Between 2005 and 2006 Member of the ad-hoc Russian Working Group on Implementation of the European Court’s judgments issued against the Russian Federation. This group was formed of several prominent human rights activists and lawyers living in Russia and working on cases before the European Court. Main task of the group was to draft a simple and reasonable methodology for implementation of every judgment of the European Court delivered against Russian Federation in the context of Chechnya anti-terrorist operation. The draft paper was presented to Mr Lukin, High Official for Implementation of the Court’s judgments (Уполномоченый по вопросам имплементации решений ЕСПЧ).

Since August 2002 till present acting also as Human Rights Trainer, lecturing in trainings, seminars, conferences on issues of international human rights law, in particular on gender issues, security and rule of law, on the European Court for Human Rights jurisprudence and other. Among many others, organised and delivered trainings for South Caucasus Lawyers on fair trial guarantees and on using the European Convention for Human Rights in litigating cases of human trafficking before the Strasbourg Court (Tbilisi July and August 2009); workshop on litigating cases of Violence Against Women (July 2009 London, October 2008 Lviv, May 2008 London, November 2006 Nazrani); litigation workshops on arbitrary deprivation of liberty and ill-treatment, states positive obligations for private parties violating human rights (May 2007 London, December 2008 Chisinau, October 2005 Moscow, September and November 2004 Chisinau); lectured to lawyers from Balkans (Albania, Macedonia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Serbia) on articles 2 and 3 of the European Court with emphasise on personal experience in litigating cases of disappearance, extrajudicial killings and torture at the European Court of HR (May 2006 Belgrade, October 2005 Chisinau, May 2007 Chisinau, December 2008 Chisinau); delivering capacity building events for particular groups: police officers, lawyers and law professionals. Have assisted UNDP Ukraine in developing and delivering 12 TOTs trainings on Effective prevention of Domestic Violence. Currently acts as trainer for the Moldovan organisation IDOM in conducting trainings on HUman Rights and HIV, the Role fo the Law in preventing HIV epidemia, non-discrimination, effective remedy and legal techniques in argueing compensation of non-pecuniary damages.


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