Jagland: Council of Europe ready to support Russia's democratic reforms

23 December 2011 Strasbourg

The Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland, welcomes the democratic reforms announced by President Medvedev and offers assistance with their implementation. "The measures announced by President Medvedev are important steps towards strengthening Russian democracy. The...

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Secretary General condemns persistent discrimination against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender population in Europe

9 December 2011 Strasbourg

Ahead of International Human Rights Day, Thorbjørn Jagland warned that lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) Europeans continue to face discrimination in many parts of the continent. "Homosexuality has been decriminalised all over Europe, but prejudice and hypocrisy still exist towards...

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Secretary General reacts to the death of Vaclav Havel

18 December 2011 Strasbourg

"Without people like Vaclav Havel, Europe today would be a very different place. As an author, dissident and statesman he always remained faithful to the values of a free and tolerant society. He did not only believe in these principles, he fought for them and made them happen. On this very sad...

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Secretary General reacts to announcement of new death sentences in Belarus

30 November 2011 Strasbourg

Secretary General of the Council of Europe Thorbjørn Jagland today made the following statement: "I urge the Belarus authorities not to carry out the death sentences pronounced today against Dzmitry Kanavalau and Uladzislau Kavalyou. The crime they were found guilty of was barbaric, but their...

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Secretary General opens the "Exchange on the religious dimension of intercultural dialogue in Luxembourg"

28 November 2011 Luxembourg

"Religion can be a powerful and positive force for social cohesion, allowing communities of different origins to work for the common good, in line with their belief", said Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland, during his opening speech at the Abbaye de Neumunster in Luxembourg. The event,...

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Jagland addresses media freedom in Turkey and meets Erdogan

15 November 2011 Ankara

By invitation of the Turkish Ministry of Justice the Secretary General participated in a conference entitled "Case Law of the European Court of Human Rights concerning Turkey: Difficulties and Suggestions for Solutions". The conference addressed a range of issues including the high number of...

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Secretary General meets French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé

23 November 2011 Paris

Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland met French Foreign Minister Alain Juppé for bilateral consultations on Wednesday in Paris. Topics of discussion included the reform of the European Court of Human Rights, the developments to southern Mediterranean countries and the accession of the European...

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Human rights overarching theme for UK Chairmanship

7 November 2011 Strasbourg

UK Foreign Secretary William Hague today stressed the determination and political commitment of his government to drive forward essential reforms of the Court of Human Rights during the British chairmanship of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers. Speaking shortly before the official...

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Jagland welcomes NGO debate on Living Together

14 November 2011 Strasbourg

Secretary General Thorbjorn Jagland welcomed the participation of non governmental organisations (NGO) from some 40 countries – including North African nations in the midst of the Arab Spring – on how to make the Council of Europe's Living Together report reality. Over the two day gathering,...

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Secretary General in London ahead of UK chairmanship

25 October 2011 London

In London today for talks with the UK government ahead of its chairmanship of the Council of Europe, the Secretary General met with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg. He also met the Secretary of State for Justice, Kenneth Clarke, Foreign Office Minister for Europe, David Lidington and members of...

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Secretary General makes first official visit to Netherlands

3 November 2011 Leiden

"Europe is a place where nations, cultures and people meet and mix and this constitutes our true identity", has said today Thorbjørn Jagland in a key-note speech at the prestigious Leiden University, during his first official visit to the Netherlands. The Secretary General met with the Prime...

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Jagland addresses Forum for Future of Democracy

13 October 2011 Limassol

"Countries are running a high risk of seriously undermining the European model of social cohesion", Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland warned when talking about the present financial crisis in his address to the Forum for the Future of Democracy on 13 October . He also stressed that the Council...

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Secretary General greets sportsmen with disabilities

18 October 2011 Strasbourg

Thorbjørn Jagland welcomed participants in the Lipetsk-Strasbourg international cycle race this afternoon at the finish line in Strasbourg, as they arrived from their 3500 km race from Russia, across Belarus, Poland and Germany. The Secretary General described the event, labelled "Europe without...

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Secretary General makes first official visit to Kazakhstan

11 October 2011 Astana

Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland is making his first official visit to Astana for meetings with the President of Kazakhstan, the Speaker of the Majilis (Lower House) of the Parliament, Secretary of State, Chairman of the Constitutional Council, Prosecutor General, Foreign Minister as well as...

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Secretary General reacts to Tymoshenko's sentence

11 October 2011 Strasbourg

Reacting to the verdict in the trial against the former Ukrainian prime minister Yulia Tymoshenko, the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland said: "In a democracy, judgment about political decisions should be left to the parliament and to voters, not to courts. I hope that...

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"What reasons behind the ban of Belgrade Pride?"

3 October 2011 Strasbourg

In a letter to the Serbian President Boris Tadic, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland, requests clarification on what measures the Serbian authorities are planning to undertake to guarantee the freedom of assembly and association for all groups of society. Letter to the...

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Secretary General meets Mahmoud Abbas

23 September 2011 New York

In New York this week to attend the UN General Assembly, Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjorn Jagland discussed the Palestinian membership bid with Mahmoud Abbas, President of the Palestinian National Authority, who will address the Parliamentary Assembly in Strasbourg in two weeks....

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Jagland makes first official visit to Poland Warsaw

15 September 2011 Warsaw

Secretary General, Thorbjørn Jagland, is today making his first official visit to Warsaw for meetings with the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Radoslaw Sikorski, the Minister of Justice, Krzysztof Kwiatkowski, and the Speaker of the Sejm, Grzegorz Schetyna. Mr Jagland will also attend the conference...

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Jagland calls on US to spare the life of Troy Davis

21 September 2011 Strasbourg

"As Secretary General of the Council of Europe I appeal to the competent US authorities to find a way to spare the life of Troy Davis, scheduled to be executed tomorrow. The reason is not only our disagreement over capital punishment, but first and foremost the serious doubts which persist about...

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Jagland condemns terrorist attacks in Ankara and Siirt

21 September 2011 Strasbourg

"I strongly condemn the terrorist attacks in Ankara and Siirt yesterday. Terrorism is a crime. It's an attack on our common values of democracy, human rights and the rule of law. We must combine our efforts to bring an end to these acts of violence", declared Thorbjørn Jagland. Press release

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