"Article 3 of Protocol No. 1 enshrines a fundamental principle of an effective political democracy. It implies the subjective rights to vote and to stand for election (see Paksas v. Lithuania [GC], no. 34932/04, § 96, 6 January 2011). This provision also expressly refers to “conditions which will ensure the free expression of the opinion of the people in the choice of the legislature”. In the 1987 case of Mathieu-Mohin and Clerfayt v. Belgium (judgment of 2 March 1987, § 54, Series A no. 113), the Court noted that this part of Article 3 “implies essentially - apart from freedom of expression ... - the principle of equality of treatment ...”. Thus, already at that time the Court recognised that “freedom of expression” was an important part of the “free expression of the opinion”. The interrelation between free elections and freedom of expression was also emphasised in Bowman v. the United Kingdom (judgment of 19 February 1998, Reports 1998-I, § 42), where the Court held that “it is particularly important in the period preceding an election that opinions and information of all kinds are permitted to circulate freely”. Lastly, in Yumak and Sadak v. Turkey [GC], cited above, the Court held that the State was under an obligation to adopt positive measures to organise elections “under conditions which will ensure the free expression of the opinion of the people in the choice of the legislature”. "