Latest News (Site updated Thursday, July 2, 2015 | 10:00)

Prevention of radicalisation, youth participation and combating poverty on Current Affairs Committee’s agenda

[01/07/2015 14:00:00] At their meeting in ’s-Hertogenbosch in the Netherlands on 1 July 2015, members of the Current Affairs Committee discussed several reports concerning the prevention of radicalisation, youth participation and social cohesion. In particular, the relevant reports were on “Guidelines for local and regional authorities on preventing radicalisation and manifestations of hate at grassroots level”, “Bringing down barriers to youth participation”, “Combating the feminisation of poverty” and “Championing children’s rights in times of austerity”. The rapporteurs reported on the state of progress of reports under preparation, in particular concerning the participation of women in politics, the development of a “toolkit” on intercultural and interfaith activities for local elected representatives and the preparation with the Governance Committee of a joint paper on following up the Congress strategy to combat radicalisation at grassroots level. In addition, members discussed their future priorities and proposed continuing their work on integrating young people through politics and employment and on regional or minority languages in Europe.The meeting was chaired by Farid Mukhametshin, Chair of the Current Affairs Committee of the Congress. Photo: Farid Mukhametshin, President of the Current Affairs Committee and Wim van de Donk, King’s Commissioner for North Brabant
Farid Mukhametshin interview
News 'King's Commissioner'
Photo gallery (Flickr)

King’s Commissioner for North Brabant welcomes the work of the Congress' Current Affairs Committee

[01/07/2015 14:30:00] “The Congress' Current Affairs Committee touches the heart of local and regional democracy. You pay particular attention to our role with regard to our society and the challenges we face,” stated Wim van de Donk, King’s Commissioner for North Brabant, Netherlands, adressing the Committee members in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, on 1 July 2015. “You fulfil your mission in line with the Council of Europe’s core values and I salute you for your tireless efforts and work” he added. The King’s Commissioner underlined the commitment of the Dutch delegation to the Congress, in particular, of Johan van den Hout, Provincial Executive of the Province of North-Brabant and Congress Thematic Spokesperson on Children. Wim van de Donk also presented the main structures and priorities of the Province of Brabant which focus on a strong cooperation between the regional government, businesses and civil society, international competitiveness and sustainable development.

Cities and regions unanimously recognised as best placed to implement concrete actions against sexual abuse of children

[30/06/2015 17:00:00] Cities and regions are the best placed authorities to implement concrete actions to protect children against sexual abuse. The work done by all stakeholders in the framework of the Council of Europe ONE in FIVE Campaign must be pursued. This was the unanimous message delivered by the participants to the seminar for national associations of local and regional authorities organised by the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, in partnership with North-Brabant province, on 30 June 2015, in ’s-Hertogenbosch (Netherlands).
Press release
Video interviews
Photo gallery [Flickr]
File 'Seminar ONE in FIVE'

Congress makes post-monitoring visit to the Republic of Moldova

[30/06/2015 16:00:00] A Congress delegation, composed of Philippe Receveur (Switzerland, EPP/CCE), Congress rapporteur on regional democracy, and Francis Lec (France, SOC), Congress rapporteur on local democracy, is to make a post-monitoring visit to Republic of Moldova on 2 July 2015. A post-monitoring programme was drawn up in partnership with the Moldovan authorities, providing for two post-monitoring units defined on the basis of the Congress’s main recommendations, to be held on 2 July 2015. The National Decentralisation Strategy will be reviewed during the first post-monitoring unit, where stock will be taken of the measures carried out from 2012 to 2015. The second post-monitoring unit will look at various issues, again based on the main recommendations adopted by the Congress, such as clarification of the distribution of powers and responsibilities between local and national levels, consultation of local authorities and a reduction in supervision of local authorities.
Press release
Programme (in French)

Johan van den Hout : “National associations are key players for our cities and regions to implement projects to fight sexual violence against children”

[30/06/2015 11:30:00] “As national associations of local and regional authorities, you play a key role in promoting the Convention of the Council of Europe on Protection of Children against Sexual Exploitation and Abuse (the Lanzarote Convention) with your own national authorities,” stated Johan van den Hout, Provincial Executive of the Province of North-Brabant and Congress Thematic Spokesperson on Children, addressing the participants to the Seminar on the ONE in FIVE Campaign to stop sexual violence against children, held in ’s-Hertogenbosch, Netherlands, on 30 June 2015. “You are also key players for the dissemination of the Pact launched by the Congress by encouraging your own municipalities to implement the initiatives it proposes”, he added. The aim of the Pact is to bring about the adoption of child-friendly local and regional services, to protect children, and help prevent sexual violence within the community. To date, more than 67 partners have already signed up to the Pact: 45 cities and regions and 22 associations including national associations of local and regional authorities.
Johan van den Hout interview
The Lanzarote convention
Photo gallery (Flickr)

Meeting of the Congress Bureau in Strasbourg

[30/06/2015 11:30:00] At its meeting in Strasbourg on 29 June, the Congress Bureau adopted the timetable for the preparation of its priorities for 2017-2020. In particular, the Bureau will hold two working meetings in December 2015 and December 2016, and national and European associations of local and regional authorities will also be consulted. In addition, the Bureau held an exchange of views with the Chair of the Group of Independent Experts (GIE) on the European Charter of Local Self-Government and discussed the agenda for the Congress’s second session in 2015 (20-22 October), in particular the participation of youth delegates, preliminary information on the observation of recent local elections in the Republic of Moldova and Albania and the contribution by the Congress to the World Forum for Democracy (Strasbourg, 18-20 November 2015).

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As of 16 June 2015 the Congress has 324 full members and 324 substitutes. The different pages of our website are currently being updated accordingly.
The agenda in brief

29th Session

2 July - Post-monitoring visit to the Republic of Moldova / Chisinau, REPUBLIC OF MOLDOVA

Calendar of events
Calendar of local and regional elections in COE member states
Drapeau européenYouth activities
Drapeau européenFocus on Ukraine
VIDEO CLIP - The Congress in brief YouTube

Drapeau européenPolitical dialogue with governments
Bosnian Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers