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Article 4 European Convention on Human Rights - Prohibition of slavery

Article 4 Prohibition of slavery
"(1) No one shall be held in slavery or servitude. 
 (2) No one shall be required to perform forced or compulsory labour. 
 (3). For the purpose of this Article the term “forced or compulsory labour” shall not include: 
(a) any work required to be done in the ordinary course of detention imposed according to the provisions of Article5 of this Convention or during conditional release from such detention; 
(b) any service of a military character or, in case of conscientious objectors in countries where they are recognised, service exacted instead of compulsory military service; 
(c) any service exacted in case of an emergency or calamity threatening the life or well-being of the community; 
(d) any work or service which forms part of normal civic obligations."
The prohibition under Art 4 is absolute; according to Art 15, Art 4 is non-derogable also there are no lawful justifications that can be invoked by the state to justify a breach.

CN v UK [2010] ECHR 380       Case summary

Art 4 includes human trafficking:

Rantsev v Cyprus & Russia [2010] ECHR 22       Case summary

SM v Croatia [2018] ECHR 633


The court adopts the definition of slavery from the 1926 Slavery Convention

 “the status or condition of a person over whom any or all of the powers attaching to the right of ownership are exercised” Siliadin v France [2005] ECHR 545