Cette interview est libre de droit pour publication par votre rédaction

Interview with René van der Linden, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe

9 March 2005

Question: “What are your hopes and expectations for this upcoming Summit in Warsaw?”

René van der Linden: “I hope that we will have a positive result, in the sense that the European Union and the Council of Europe will co-operate well in the future, and that the Council of Europe will come to be seen as a ‘college for democracy’ which nourishes the values of Europe and the principles of democracy, human rights and the rule of law.

In particular, I hope that we can avoid any fresh divisions between one part of Europe and another. In order to do this we must make use of the Council of Europe, a pan-European organisation which, through its Assembly, brings together the directly elected representatives of 46 countries across Europe. This means they can have an impact on parliamentary debate in two ways, since they have a double mandate: a European mandate at the Council of Europe and a national mandate in their home country.

The Council of Europe offers undeniable added value compared to the European Union, and we must make use of it!”