Subject: Dispute Resolution
Autor: Marcel Frey
Reading time: 5 Min

The long race of Caster Semenya: European Court for Human Rights chides Swiss Federal Supreme Court

Marcel Frey and Sapphire Graham discuss a recent Federal Supreme Court and an ensuing European Human Rights Court decision on the eligibility to compete of the Olympic middle-distance athlete Caster Semenya.

The Swiss Federal Supreme Court in the summer of 2020 had decided that the award by the Court for Arbitration for Sport on the complaint by the middle distance runner Caster Semenya, whereby it had dismissed her eligibility to compete in certain middle distance races owing to her genetic difference in sex disorder, was not contrary to Swiss public policy. In its decision of July 2023, the European Court on Human Rights however held, that the institutional and procedural safeguards in Switzerland did not allow her to have her complaints examined effectively and that the domestic remedies available to the applicant could not be considered effective in the circumstances of the present case.

Detailed information is available for download in the PDF.