International conference explores ways to coordinate policies on AI regulation

Online event (10 a.m.-5.45 p.m) 26 October 2021
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An international conference will address the challenges that governments face to regulate artificial intelligence (AI) in a coordinated way. Organised under the theme “Current and Future Challenges of Coordinated Policies on AI Regulation”, the event will showcase various AI governance models and examine the interplay between national policies and the work of the Council of Europe – including the intergovermental AI expert body CAHAI - and other organisations.

Organised by the Hungarian Presidency of the Committee of Ministers and the Council of Europe, the conference aims to contribute to the improvement of AI policymaking at global, regional and national level. Opening speakers include Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić, President of Parliamentary Assembly Rik Daems, and Minister of Justice of Hungary Judit Varga.

The event will be webcast live on the conference website.

Contact: Jaime Rodriguez, tel. +33 6 89 99 50 42

Session of the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities

Strasbourg 26-28 October 2021
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The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities will hold its session, for the first time in person since the Covid-19 pandemic.

The Congress will hold debates on the “Post-Covid Recovery”, on the migration challenges, working conditions of elected representatives in times of hate speech and fake news on the internet, on the challenges and opportunities for municipalities presented by home-sharing platforms, on inter-regional and cross-border co-operation, as well as on lifelong education for lifelong employment of young generations. Under the initiative “Rejuvenating Politics”, youth delegates will present projects from the field.

The Congress will adopt the monitoring reports on Albania, Cyprus, the Netherlands, North Macedonia and Spain as part of its monitoring of the compliance of Council of Europe member states with the European Charter of Local Self-Government.

The ceremony for the 7th edition of the Dosta! - Congress Prize given to municipalities for the inclusion of the Roma and Traveller communities will also be held.

The Congress session will be open to media upon prior accreditation. Interpretation will be provided in English, French, Italian, German, Russian and Turkish.

The session will be live webcast as from 26 October 10 a.m.

Special page of the 41st session (agenda, documents, link to webcast)

Contact: Tatiana Baeva, tel. + 33 6 85 11 64 93

Presentation to the press of the World Forum for Democracy 2021

Strasbourg (9 a.m.-10 a.m., Lieu d’Europe, 8 Rue Boecklin) 27 October 2021
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“Can democracy save the environment?” The World Forum for Democracy will bring together intellectuals, politicians, activists, experts and young people from all over the world from 8 to 10 November in Strasbourg to answer this question, after a year-long, worldwide, online debate about democracy and the environment.

The Council of Europe, the City of Strasbourg, the French government, the Grand Est Region and the European Collectivity of Alsace, will present the programme of the Forum at a press conference.

Due to the sanitary context, accreditation is compulsory.

More information - Contact/accreditation: Estelle Steiner, tel +33 6 08 46 01 57

50th anniversary of the Pompidou Group

Paris (Centre Pompidou) and online 28 October 2021
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The Council of Europe’s International Co-operation Group on Drugs and Addictions (Pompidou Group) will mark its 50th anniversary at an event that will look back over its history and successes, while also highlighting the importance of placing human rights at the heart of drug policies. Opening statements will be made by Marta Temido, Portuguese Minister of Health, Péter Szijjártó, Hungarian Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Chair of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović Burić, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, and a high-level representative of France (9.30-10.30 a.m.).

The Pompidou Group will announce winners of the 10th European Drug Prevention Prize 2021, which is awarded for addiction prevention projects involving young people at the planning, implementation or evaluation phase (4.30 p.m).

The event will be livestreamed; accreditation is mandatory for journalists who wish to be present.

More information - Programme – Contact/accreditation: Estelle Steiner, tel. +33 6 08 46 01 57

And also…

25 October, Paris

As part of the activities of the No Hate Parliamentary Alliance, the Swedish Parliament and the Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) Equality Committee will hold a conference on “Diversity, inclusiveness and non-discrimination against racism and intolerance in Europe”, which will focus on three themes: the normalisation of racism and radical rhetoric in the political landscape; the need for an intersectional approach in combating racism and discrimination; and racism in collective imagination and the cultural industry.

It will be opened by Momodou Malcolm Jallow, PACE General Rapporteur on combating racism and intolerance; Andreas Norlén, Speaker of the Swedish Parliament; Bjørn Berge, Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe; and Boriana Åberg, Chairperson of the Swedish delegation to PACE.

Speakers will include, in particular, parliamentarians; representatives of the United Nations, the European Union, and NGOs; the Swedish Equality Ombudsman; the Swedish member of the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI); and academics.

The conference will be livestreamed (from 9.15 a.m. to noon and from 1.30 to 5.30 p.m) on PACE’s Facebook page.


25 October, Strasbourg

The European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ) will be celebrating the European Day of Justice. Free information and advice days will be organised by lawyers and notaries, in partnership with the international associations representing them. The courts will also open their doors to show their work and the methods they use. In addition, seminars and round-table discussions are planned for justice professionals. Children have not been forgotten; online teaching modules on the functioning of judicial systems, drawing competitions on the theme of justice, and simulations of procedures will be offered. Already, nearly twenty events have been announced.

More information - Contact: Estelle Steiner, tel. +33 6 08 46 01 57

25-27 October, Malta

Bernard Fournier and George Loucaides, PACE rapporteurs for the honouring of membership obligations to the Council of Europe by Malta will make a fact-finding visit to the country. This “Periodic review” is an assessment of whether a state is fulfilling its obligation to uphold the Council of Europe’s human rights and democratic standards and applies to all member States that are not under a full monitoring procedure or engaged in “post-monitoring dialogue”.

26 October, Strasbourg

The European Court of Human Rights will notify in writing eight judgments concerning Austria, Bulgaria, Lithuania, the Republic of Moldova, Slovenia, and Spain.

More information - ECHR Website, tel. +33 3 90 21 42 08

26 October, hybrid event (9 a.m.–2.30 p.m.)

A conference entitled “The role of foreign policy in advancing gender equality: Addressing the challenges, pushbacks and obstacles faced by women” will be organised by the Cypriot Foreign Affairs Ministry in partnership with the Council of Europe.

It will be opened by Cypriot Foreign Affairs Minister Nikos Christodoulides, Cypriot House of Representatives President Annita Demetriou and Council of Europe Deputy Secretary General Bjørn Berge.

More information - Programme - Concept note

Contact: Giuseppe Zaffuto, tel. +33 6 86 32 10 24

27-28 October, Nur-Sultan, (Kazakhstan) and online

The Council of Europe, the European Union and the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan will organise an international round table “Reforms of the judiciary in Kazakhstan: Addressing new challenges by using best international practices” in the framework of the Central Asia Rule of Law Programme.

Zhakip Asanov, Chairman of the Supreme Court of the Republic of Kazakhstan; Kestutis Jankauskas, European Union Ambassador to Kazakhstan and Ramin Garagurbali, President of the European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice, (CEPEJ) will participate in the event.

The meeting will take place from 2.30 to 7 p.m. (Nur-Sultan time). Media representatives will be able to follow the event online via a link that will be posted on the programme’s website. Interviews can be organised upon preliminary request.

Languages of the meeting: English-Russian-Kazakh with simultaneous interpretation.

Contact: Tatiana Baeva, tel. +33 6 85 11 64 93

28 October, Strasbourg

The European Court of Human Rights will notify in writing 54 judgments and/or decisions concerning Albania, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Croatia, Hungary, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, the Republic of Moldova, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Turkey and Ukraine.

More information - ECHR Website, tel. +33 3 90 21 42 08

28 October, Pristina

The launch of local awareness raising initiatives under the joint Council of Europe and the European Union campaign “Block the hatred. Share the love” in the Western Balkans, will begin with a public event.

Opening remarks will be provided by Albin Kurti, Prime Minister; Tomáš Szunyog, European Union Special Representative/Head of European Union Office in Pristina; Verena Taylor, Director of the Council of Europe Office of the Directorate General of Programmes; and Naim Qelaj, Ombudsperson.

Youth activists, civil society organisations and prominent public figures in the field of diversity and equality will also attend.

Open to media, the event will take place in the Hall of the National Library “Pjetër Bogdani”, at 12 noon.

Programme - Contacts: Dušan Vojnović, tel. +33 6 61 03 83 00; Besnik Baka, tel. +355 692178430

28-29 October, Strasbourg (Seat of the Région Grand Est) and online

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities, in partnership with United Cities and Local Governments (UCLG), will hold a workshop on “The contribution of regional authorities to national reviews on the implementing the Agenda 2030/ How can regions deliver on voluntary reviews?”.

The workshop will focus on the best ways to facilitate the inclusion of regional and local input into national strategies, action plans and reviews for the implementation of the Sustainable Development Goals of the United Nations Agenda 2030.

It will take place from 9.15 am to 10.15 am on 29 October, during the High-level Conference of the Assembly of European Regions on Agenda 2030: Transforming Regions, Changing the World.

It will be held in English. Contact: Tatiana Baeva, tel. +33 6 85 11 64 93

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