- Founded on the 5th May 1949 by 10 countries in the aftermath of the second world war
- Set up to promote democracy and human rights and the rule of law in Europe
- Based in Strasbourg, comprised of 47 member countries of Europe
- Chaired by Foreign Secretary William Hague
Justice Secretary Kenneth Clarke insists that Britain has steered through real reforms to the European Court of Human Rights.
The row over Abu Qatada is set to be reignited as Britain tries to secure a deal that could see European human rights judges intervene less.