The Secretary General The Secretary General

 The Secretary General

The Secretary General is elected by the Parliamentary Assembly for a five-year term at the head of the Organisation. He is responsible for the strategic planning and direction of the Council's work programme and budget. He leads and represents the Organisation. more

Council of Europe main bodies Council of Europe main bodies

The Council of Europe operates on the basis of a dialogue between its main bodies: the Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of Europe, Commissioner for Human Rights and the Conference of INGOs. 

Committee of Ministers Committee of Ministers

The Committee of Ministers is the decision-making body of the Council of Europe, comprising the Ministers of Foreign Affairs of all the member states, or their permanent diplomatic representatives in Strasbourg. It is both a governmental body, where national approaches to problems facing European society can be discussed on an equal footing, and a collective forum, where Europe-wide responses to such challenges are formulated. In collaboration with the Parliamentary Assembly, it is the guardian of the Council's fundamental values, and monitors member states' compliance with their undertakings.more

Parliamentary Assembly Parliamentary Assembly

The Assembly regularly monitors the way member states honour their commitments and the compliance of national policies with their obligations as members of the Council of Europe.It represents the main political tendencies in its member states. It comprises parliamentary representatives of the forty-five member states of the Council of Europe, who are elected or appointed by national parliaments.more

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe is a pan-European political assembly, the 636 members of which hold elective office (they may be regional or municipal councillors, mayors or presidents of regional authorities) representing over 200,000 authorities in 47 European states. Its role is to promote local and regional democracy, improve local and regional governance and strengthen authorities' self-government. It pays particular attention to application of the principles laid down in the European Charter of Local Self-Government. more

European Court of Human Rights European Court of Human Rights

The European Court of Human Rights oversees the implementation of the Convention in the member states. It is an international court set up in 1959. It rules on individual or State applications alleging violations of the civil and political rights set out in the European Convention on Human Rights once all possibilities of appeal have been exhausted in the member state concerned. Since 1998 it has sat as a full-time court and individuals can apply to it directly. more

Commissioner for Human Rights Commissioner for Human Rights

Commissioner for Human Rights Human rights have been a pillar of European construction, inspiring cooperation between countries and people. However, all too often implementation has lagged behind standard setting, lofty words have not always been matched by concrete action to the benefit of human rights. In order to fulfil Europe's promise, it is necessary to address systemic shortcomings in member states and to establish sustainable human rights centred policies at national and local level. more

The Council of Europe and Non-Governmental Organisations The Council of Europe and Non-Governmental Organisations

The Council of Europe’s work benefits extensively from contacts and co-operation with the dynamic elements of society, as represented by NGOs. One of the main challenges currently facing the Organisation is to strengthen NGOs and civil society and to develop participatory democracy on a pan-European basis. more