This article discusses the diverging case law of the European Court of Human Rights and the European Court of Justice on the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction and the child abduction aspects of the EU Brussels IIa Regulation. It does this by analysing the two latest decisions from these courts, Raban and Aguirre Zarraga. It is considered that the European Court of Human Rights is placing too much emphasis on the best interests of the child, while the European Court of Justice is relying too much on the principle of mutual trust and neglecting human rights. The inconsistency between these two major courts needs to be rectified in order to protect the uniform interpretation of the Convention and an appropriate application of the Regulation.
- child abduction
- Court of Justice of the European Union, European Court of Human Rights
- right to be heard
- best interests of the child