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Congress President meets Prime Minister of Moldova: “The Congress will continue to support Molodova in its reforms”

[26/06/2017 17:00:00] On 26 June 2017, during the session of the Council of Europe parliamentary Assembly, Congress President Gudrun Mosler-Törnström met with Prime Minister of Moldova Pavel Filip. They discussed the political situation in the country as well as the forthcoming reforms of central and local government. Prime Minister Filip said Moldova would take into account the advice of the Council of Europe Venice Commission on a new electoral law and would also highly appreciate to benefit from the Congress’ expertise in the field of decentralisation. President Mosler-Törnström underlined that the Congress has always supported Moldova in its reforms and will continue to do so. “The Congress has signed in July 2016 a road map for the implementation of the Congress recommendations following its monitoring of the country. We would be glad to pursue this political dialogue and exchange on our know how with your authorities “ she said. The Prime Minister invited the President to pay a visit to Moldova in order to further discuss the forthcoming reforms. The President of the Congress also draw the Prime Minister’s attention to the situation of the Mayor of Chisinau and Vice-President of the Congress, Dorin Chirtoaca, who is currently under home arrest.

Bilateral meetings between the President of the Congress and the authorities of the Czech Republic

[16/06/2017 16:00:00] Gudrun Mosler-Tornstrom held bilateral meetings in Prague on 15 June with the Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs Lubomir Zaroalek, the Vice-Chairman of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Chamber of Deputies, Jana Fischerova and the Deputy-Minister of Interior Petr Misna. The meetings were organised during the Czech chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers. The Congress President highlighted the importance for the Congress to develop a political dialogue with the governments of the member States during their chairmanships. She also stressed the importance for the Congress to have a good cooperation with the national associations of local and regional authorities, which can help to implement the Congress' recommendations and give the Congress' work greater visibility in the member States. After the meetings, the President went to chair the meeting of the Bureau of the Congress in the capitale city of Moravia, Brno, at the invitation of the Czech Union of Towns and Municipalities and the Mayor of Brno. Photo: (from left to right) Gudrun Mosler-Törnström, Congress President, Lubomir Zaroalek, Czech Minister of Foreign Affairs, and Andreas Kiefer, Congress Secretary General

Congress takes part in seminar on local institutional reforms in Europe

[21/06/2017 11:30:00] The Congress took part in the European seminar held by the International Association of Schools and Institutes of Administration (IASIA) at the French National Institute of Local Studies (INET) in Strasbourg on 19 and 20 June on “Territorial reforms and training of local elected officials and local public servants in Europe”. In his opening address, Xavier Cadoret (France, SOC), Vice-President of the Congress, reaffirmed the importance of striking a fair and effective balance between guarantees of self-government and the dynamic development of local and regional structures against a background of reforms that aimed at improving governance. He added that “the method employed when devising and implementing reforms is important. Consultation between the various tiers of government, and citizen participation, for instance through referendums, are means of achieving greater acceptance and therefore promise more effective implementation of the reforms.” Luc Martens, Congress member (Belgium, EPP/CCE) and municipal councillor in Roeselare, also spoke during the workshop on “Modernisation of local public action in Europe: towards better democratic governance?” He praised the move towards greater flexibility in forms of local governance, while highlighting the risks associated with excessive outsourcing of services.
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Agenda of the seminar
Speech by Xavier Cadoret (French version)

Congress' participation at the 111th Session of the Venice Commission

[19/06/2017 16:00:00] Stewart Dickson (United-Kingdom, ILDG), Member of the Chamber of Regions of the Congress, presented the Congress’ monitoring activities regarding the European Charter of Local Self-Government and election observation during the 111th Session of the Venice Commission, on 16 March 2017. On this occasion, he informed the members of the Venice Commission of the recent monitoring visits to Italy, Andorra, Monaco, Liechtenstein and San Marino, countries in which the small surface area may have a decisive impact on the organisation of local democracy and application of the Charter. 'In this regard, Congress plans to dedicate a debate during its plenary session in March 2018', he said. Mr Dickson also drew the Venice Commission’s attention to the ongoing process of discussion with the Greek national authorities to launch a post-monitoring dialogue with Greece which is now considering the possibility to hold a constitutional reform affecting also local self-government.
Full text of the news
Speech - Stewart Dickson

Instruments to engage citizens: towards improvement of Georgia’s local governance system

[19/06/2017 14:30:00] “Local authorities should be supported by a framework enabling them to effectively take heed of their citizens, analyse their ideas, and ensure that these voices are projected into decision-making” affirmed David Narmania, Head of the Delegation of Georgia to the Congress and Mayor of Tbilisi, when addressing participants of the conference on ‘Institutionalised citizen participation: an instrument for democratic governance’. The event, organised jointly between the Congress and the National Association of Local Authorities of Georgia, served as a platform for analysis of the foundation for local governance in Georgia and the effectiveness of the instutionalised mechanisms for citizen participation; contributing in turn to “the achievement of sustainable and achievable outcomes”, as put by Carlo Natale, Deputy Head of the European Union Delegation to Georgia. Exploring good practices in Georgia and Europe, representatives of the central and local authorities, civil society, experts and Congress members, shared their opinions on amendments to the ‘Code of Local Self-Government’. The exchanges held will contribute to the production of “tangible results for citizens”, stated by Irakli Matkava, First Deputy Minister of Regional Development and Infrastructure, and to the discussions on the development of a new decentralisation strategy.
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Local councillors play a key role within the decentralisation process in Ukraine

[19/06/2017 15:30:00] A three-day workshop organised in Odessa, from 13 to 15 June, by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, gathered together 32 councillors from 7 Southern and Eastern regions of Ukraine. Discussions focused on their engagement and priorities to develop their communities, as well as on ways to enhance trust of citizens. Notably, they had the opportunity to share their experience in implementing initiatives on local democracy with experts from Ireland, Lithuania and Ukraine. As Sergiy Mazur, member of the Congress (Ukraine, CRE-ECR), pointed out: “Exchanging good practices with councillors from other European countries is key for Ukrainian local councillors to succeed in creating resilient communities”. This workshop was organised in the framework of the project “Promoting local democracy in Ukraine”, which is part of the Council of Europe Action Plan for Ukraine 2015-2017. It aims to improve the implementation of democratic principles in Ukraine, by enhancing the institutional and leadership capacities of local elected representatives (mayors and local councillors), and disseminating nation-wide good practices of local democracy.
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Organiser des activités interculturelles et interreligieuses

Organiser des activités interculturelles et interreligieuses

The agenda in brief

27 June - Monitoring Committee meeting / Kharkiv, UKRAINE
29 June - Community of practice on local democracy in the Eastern Partnership countries / Kyiv, UKRAINE

Calendar of events

Calendar of local and regional elections


Organiser des activités interculturelles et interreligieuses
Organising intercultural and interreligious activities - File

Organising intercultural and interreligious activities
Alliance of European Cities against violent extremism - File

Organising intercultural and interreligious activities
Drapeau européenCo-operation activities

Drapeau européenYouth activities
Drapeau européenFocus on Ukraine
VIDEO CLIP - The Congress in brief YouTube

Drapeau européenPolitical dialogue with governments
Czech Republic Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers