Common foreign and security policy - Restrictive measures taken against Syria - Freezing of funds - Entry of an individual on the lists of persons subject to restrictive measures - Personal ties to members of the regime - Rights of the defence - Fair hearing - Obligation to state reasons - Burden of proof - Right to effective judicial protection - Proportionality - Right to property - Right to privacy.
Outcome of the case:
THE GENERAL COURT (Sixth Chamber) hereby:
59) It must be observed that the fundamental right to observance of the rights of defence during a procedure preceding the adoption of a restrictive measure is expressly affirmed in Article 41(2)(a) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, recognised by Article 6(1) TEU as having the same legal value as the Treaties (see, to that effect, Case C‑27/09 P France v People’s Mojahedin Organization of Iran  ECR I‑13427, paragraph 66).
60) In addition, according to settled case-law, the principle of effective judicial protection is a general principle of EU law stemming from the constitutional traditions common to the Member States, which has been enshrined in Articles 6 and 13 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms, signed in Rome on 4 November 1950, and which has also been reaffirmed by Article 47 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union (Case C‑432/05 Unibet  ECR I‑2271, paragraph 37, and Joined Cases C‑402/05 P and C‑415/05 P Kadi and Al Barakaat International Foundation v Council and Commission  ECR I‑6351, ‘ Kadi’ , paragraph 335).
107) The applicant claims that her inclusion on the lists of persons targeted by the restrictive measures against Syria is inconsistent with the principle of proportionality enshrined in Article 52(1) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. In default of evidence of reprehensible conduct on her part, her inclusion was unnecessary and did not meet the objectives of those measures.
108) According to the applicant, the freezing of her assets as a result of the contested decisions also violates her right to property, protected by Article 17(1) of the Charter of Fundamental Rights, as it prevents her from freely enjoying her property, and such restriction was neither necessary nor appropriate for attaining the Council’s objectives. In spite of their protective nature and their applicability only to economic resources situated within the Union, the restrictive measures against her deprive her of her right to property as she is unable to make dispositions of it.
109) For similar reasons, the restrictions imposed by the measures in question on her freedom to travel infringe her right to private life, recognised by Article 7 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights.
112) It must be observed that the right to property is one of the general principles of Union law and is enshrined by Article 17 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights. Regarding the right to respect for private life, Article 7 of the Charter recognises the right to respect for private and family life (see, to that effect, Joined Cases C‑356/11 and C‑357/11 O. and Others  ECR, paragraph 76).