Non-Governmental Organisations




        Strasbourg, 6 January 2014


The committee on Democracy, Social Cohesion and Global Challenges, meeting 26 June 2013 in Strasbourg, chaired by Anne-Marie CHAVANON,

    1. Draft Agenda

      adopted the draft agenda of the meeting

    2. Synopsis of the previous meeting

      adopted without amendment the synopsis of the 22 January 2013 meeting

    3. Local Authorities and citizen participation :

      3.1. Good Governance of Large Metropoles
      exchanges, with a panel on « Governance of large cities »

        · on the case of London, Berlin and Istanbul with Jeffrey Donaldson, a member of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe, author of a report on this subject
        · on the events in Istanbul motivated by opposition from residents of the metropolis to an urban development project with Kayhan KARACA, European correspondent of NTV Turkey
        · on a young citizens initiative, conducted outside the formal organisations of Marseille Capital of Culture, with Nicolas DETRIE, Director of Yes we camp,

      decided, after discussion, that a appeal would be mailed to the Turkish authorities by the Chair, on behalf of the Committee, inviting Turkey as a founding member of the Council of Europe, to resume and intensify a peaceful dialogue with protesters

      3.2. Good pratices to be shared
      informed by Antonella VALMORBIDA of the work done by the Committee and the Conference of INGOs to promote the Code of Good Practice for Civil Participation in Decision-making

    4. Global Challenges

      4.1. Human Rights and Climate Change
      heard the positions of Annelise OESCHGER, Chair Human Rights Committee and Edith Wenger, Head of the Working group ‘climate change and human rights’
      decided that a statement to this effect would be adopted electronically before the UNFCCC Conference in Warsaw, and disseminated to governmental and non-governmental organizations and posted on the websites of the Commission (link)

      4.2. The situation in Syria, the commitment of humanitarian NGOs
      exchanged with Pierre SALIGNON, Executive Director of Médecins du Monde on the extreme gravity of the situation of victims in Syria, the dramatic conditions in which health services work and ongoing violation of the Geneva Conventions and the IACHR
      decided to support the call by Médecins du Monde to Syria to respect these international conventions (link)
      heard an analysis by Jean-Pierre ESTIVAL, author of a recent book on Syria, on the evolution of conflict

    5. Participation of the Committee to the Council of Europe 2013 activity on behalf of the Conference of INGOs


    5.1. Anne-Marie CHAVANON, chair, reporting on the Seminar on good democratic governance at local and regional level held in Strasbourg on 17 and 18 June 2013 and on the 2013 edition of the European Landscape Convention Award
    5.2. Patrice COLLIGNON, director of RED, on the conclusions of the 7th Conference of the Council of Europe on the European Landscape Convention on 26 and 27 March 2013
    5.3. Vera JOHN-MIKOLAJEWSKI, vice-president of the Committee on the work of the communication platform of civil society in Belarus
    6. Partnership with the other bodies of the Council of Europe

      6.1. 2013 World Forum for Democracy on the theme "Rewiring Democracy - reconnecting democratic institutions and citizens in the age of information"
      had an exchange of views with Eladio FERNANDEZ-GALIANO, Head of the democratic initiatives department, on the theme, the course of the event and the role of the Conference of INGOs
      was informed of the initiative of the Chair to propose the city of Porto Alegre innovative examples in the field of e-democracy
      6.2. European Local Democracy Week

        had an exchange of views with the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities pilot of the event and committed to actively contribute to this new edition dedicated to « Active citizenship, vote, share, participate »

      6.3. Advisory Youth Council and the Joint Council on Youth of the Council of Europe

        heard Israël MENSAH, Vice-Chairman of the Committee call to support the "against Hate Speech" movement launched on 3 and 4 April 2013 in Budapest

    7. Working groups activity

      took note of the progress of the working groups on presentation of their leaders
      - European Citizenshipe (Hélène PICHON)
      - Habitat and Health (Bernard AUBERT)
      - Relations with the EU civil society (Claude-Laurent GENTY)
      - Gender perspectives in the political and democratic process especially during and after conflict »
      agreed to adopt the principle of a draft recommendation presented by Anje WIERSINGA, Head of the Working Group
      approved the creation of a new working group "Social cohesion and intercultural dialogue" led by Israel Mensah, Vice-Chairman of the Committee and presented by Laure-Marie SCHAER

    8. Date of the next plenary committee meeting : janvier 2014