Council of Europe and European Union

A Europe of Partners : Towards an associate partnership between the Council of Europe and the European Union

In his memorandum of 25 September 2003, Council of Europe Secretary General Walter Schwimmer examines the options for an associate partnership between his Organisation and the European Union (EU). He points out that the already agreed enlargement and the perspective of further enlargement in the years to come, as well as the entry into force of the Constitution for Europe in 2005/2006, are likely to have important repercussions on the participation of the EU as such and of its present and future member states within the Council of Europe. The existing framework of cooperation, which is restricted both in scope and substance, should therefore be revised to allow for closer coordination of standard-setting activities. Accession to the European Convention on Human Rights and other important Council of Europe treaties will ensure coherence and certainty in the legal standards applied all over Europe.

Memorandum by the Secretary General

“Europe cannot afford competition or duplication”

The EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus Heikki Talvitie met with the Assembly’s Rapporteur on the conflict dealt with by the OSCE Minsk Conference (Nagorno-Karabakh) Terry Davis, in Strasbourg on 25 September 2003. In an interview following the meeting, both present their views on cooperation in this matter.

Interview

Future relations between EU and Council of Europe are of primary importance for our organisation says Walter Schwimmer

Speaking at a press conference in Strasbourg on 30 September, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Walter Schwimmer, stressed that future relations between the European Union and the Council of Europe were of primary importance to the 45-member Organisation, and would also be at the heart of the 3rd Summit of Heads of State and Government. (more ...)

The cooperation between Council of Europe and EU

The Council of Europe and the European Union share the same values and pursue common aims with regard to the protection of democracy, respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms, and the rule of law. These common aims have led them in recent years to develop a number of joint programmes for cooperation in several fields: legal matters, fight against racism, audiovisual sector, education, sport, environment, North-South issues, and others.

Cooperation modalities

Fields of cooperation

Press releases

Web sites

CoE Legal Affairs

European Union

Joint meeting Parliamentary Assembly / European Parliament


The Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly opened its autumn session on 25 September 2003 with a joint meeting with the European Parliament. The Presidents of both Assemblies, Peter Schieder and Pat Cox, gave introductory addresses on the theme of '’Building one Europe’', and speeches by Members followed on co-operation between the two institutions and on freedom of movement, migration and border controls. Photo : Peter Schieder (right), AP President, and Pat Cox, EP President

Programme

Speech by Peter Schieder

Speech by Pat Cox

Photo Gallery

Charter of European Political Parties for a Non Racist-Society"

File ''AP Session''

EU enlargement will make the Council of Europe more necessary than ever

The Assembly recommended on 26 June 2003 to the Committee of Ministers to start negotiating with the European Union in order to draw up legal instruments allowing the EU to accede to the European Convention on Human Rights. Speaking at the Assembly's urgent debate on the Convention on the Future of Europe, Secretary General Walter Schwimmer said that EU enlargement will strengthen, rather than reduce, the need for the Council of Europe. “Considering EU associated membership in the Council of Europe would be a political signal, demonstrating genuine commitment to such an undivided Europe”, he added.

Council of Europe's conventional "Acquis" which is of interest for accession to the European Union

The Council of Europe's European Convention on Human Rights and the European Union's Charter of Fundamental Rights

The Steering Committee for Human Rights' work on the legal and technical aspects of any accession of the EU to the European Convention on Human Rights "will help to "demystify" the issue of accession, by showing that it is perfectly feasible from a legal and technical point of view".

European Convention on Human Rights

Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union

Speech by Pierre-Henri Imbert, Director General of Human Rights Council of Europe - September 2002

Study of technical and legal issues of a possible EC/EU accession to the European Convention on Human Rights - June 2002

Conferences

The Council of Europe's European Convention on Human Rights and the European Union's Charter of Fundamental Rights: Judges' Symposium - Luxembourg- 16 September 2002

International Conference on the Council of Europe's Contribution to the European Union Acquis -Santiago De Compostela (Galicia) - Spain 3-4 June 2002

Background information

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Parliamentary Assembly

Speech by Peter Schieder – Joint meeting Parliamentary Assembly / European Union – 25.06.2003

The Council of Europe and the Convention on the future of Europe – Report 24.06.2003

Contribution of the Council of Europe to the constitution-making process of the European Union – Resolution 1314 (2003)

The Council of Europe and the new issues involved in building Europe – Report 13.09.2002

Secretary General

Towards an associate partnership between the Council of Europe and the European Union – 25.09.2003

Building One Europe: the Council of Europe and the enlarging European Union - Prague – 01.09.2003

Statement by Walter Schwimmer, Secretary General of the Council of Europe - Urgent debate on “The Council of Europe and the European Convention on the future of Europe” – 26.06.2003

Relations between the Council of Europe and the European Union - 19th Quadripartite meeting Luxembourg - 17.06.2003

Statement by Walter Schwimmer - Urgent debate on “The Council of Europe and the European Convention on the future of Europe” – 26.06.2003

Secretary General calls for ''community of values'' between Council of Europe and EU – 22.05.2003

Committee of Ministers

Resolution and Declaration on the future role of the Council of Europe in European construction 05.05.1989