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Visit to Georgia

Georgia: greater efforts are needed to improve the administration of justice and promote tolerance

27/1/2014 Strasbourg

"Though Georgia has enacted important reforms in the justice system, further efforts are needed to strengthen the independence and impartiality of the judiciary," said Nils Muižnieks, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, at the end of a six-day visit to the country. During the...

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Legal assessment

Ukraine: Commissioner Muižnieks to assess legislative changes

17/01/2014 Strasbourg

"Yesterday, several legislative amendments were adopted by the Ukrainian Parliament. The process took place with unusual haste; the amendments were tabled on 14 January and rushed through Parliament two days later. These amendments, which have reportedly already been signed into law by the...

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Country visit report

Corruption and political interference burden Albania's judicial system

16/01/2014 Strasbourg

"The high level of corruption in the judiciary seriously impedes the proper functioning of the judiciary and undermines public trust in justice and the rule of law in Albania. The authorities have to step up their efforts to ensure that all cases of corruption in the judiciary are effectively...

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Letter to Greek Ministers

Greece must end collective expulsions

14/1/2014 Strasbourg

"The large number of reported collective expulsions by Greece of migrants, including a large number of Syrians fleeing war violence, and allegations of ill-treatment of migrants by members of the coast guard and of the border police raise serious human rights concerns. I call on the Greek...

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Press conference

Europe is failing Syrian refugees

Berlin, 19/12/2013 - , In a press conference in Berlin concluding a 5-day visit to Turkey, Bulgaria and Germany on the Syrian refugee crisis, the Commissioner urged European countries to step up their efforts in providing protection to the more than one million Syrian refugees in Europe. "Turkey...

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Letter to the Prime Minister of Serbia

Serbia should end degrading reception conditions for asylum seekers

12/12/2013 Strasbourg

"Serbia needs to strengthen its asylum system and reception capacities in order to cope with the ever increasing number of arrivals, in particular from war-torn Syria. I could witness signs of the current strains on the Serbian asylum system during my November visit in the reception centre of...

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Letter to the Mayor of Rome

The municipality of Rome should step up its support to Roma and refugees

11/12/2013 Strasbourg

"The situation of Roma and refugees in Italy is a long-standing concern. Local authorities, including in Rome, have an important role to play in improving the living conditions of these people," said today Nils Muižnieks, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, while releasing a letter...

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Video message

Restrictions on freedom of expression and assembly still serious human rights concerns in Azerbaijan

11/12/2013 Strasbourg

In a video message to the Azerbaijan's Human Rights Forum, organized by the Institute for Reporters' Freedom and Safety (IRFS), in Baku, Azerbaijan, the Commissioner expressed his serious concern at the apparent intensification of the practice of unjustified or selective criminal prosecution of...

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Publication of an Issue Paper

Austerity measures across Europe have undermined human rights

04/12/13 Strasbourg

"Many governments in Europe imposing austerity measures have forgotten about their human rights obligations, especially the social and economic rights of the most vulnerable, the need to ensure access to justice, and the right to equal treatment. Regrettably, international lenders have also...

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Freedom of assembly

Commissioner concerned about the situation in Ukraine

02/12/2013 Strasbourg

"I have been following with great concern the recent events in Ukraine. Freedom of assembly is a fundamental human right and as such must be always upheld by the authorities. Several cases of excessive use of force were reported, both against the demonstrators and the journalists covering the...

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Country visit report

Police misconduct in Turkey raises serious human rights concerns

26/11/2013 Strasbourg

"The police's handling of demonstrations in Turkey exposes once again the long-standing, serious human rights problem of the misconduct of law enforcement officials in the country. It is time for the Turkish police to improve their record of compliance with human rights standards", said today...

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Visit to Denmark

Children’s rights should be better respected in migration and asylum

22/11/2013 Copenhagen

"More systematic consideration should be given to the best interests of the child in migration and asylum policies and procedures" said Nils Muižnieks, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, after a three-day visit to Copenhagen (19-22 November 2013). The Commissioner is concerned...

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Statement

Commissioner's reaction to racist attacks on French Minister of Justice Taubira

14/11/2013 Strasbourg

The racist attacks on Ms Christiane Taubira, the French Minister of Justice, over the last few months give serious cause for concern. Racist speech and, more broadly speaking, the rejection of diversity, seriously undermine human rights, human dignity and the values on which today's Europe is...

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Report on visit to the Russian Federation (2013)

Russia must strengthen the independence and the impartiality of the judiciary

12/11/2013 Strasbourg

"Substantial reforms should continue in order to remedy the systemic deficiencies in the administration of justice and strengthen the independence and impartiality of the judiciary in the Russian Federation", said today Nils Muižnieks, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, releasing a...

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Freedom of expression and democracy in the digital age - Opportunities, rights, responsibilities

07/11/2013 Belgrade

In his keynote speech at the Council of Europe Conference of Ministers responsible for Media and Information Society today, the Commissioner highlighted restrictions to media freedom on grounds of national security as particularly serious ones, following the recent disclosure of the US and UK...

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EU border control policies negatively affect human rights

06/11/2013 - 9:30 Strasbourg

"The EU externalisation of border control policies has a deleterious effect on human rights, in particular the right to leave a country, which is a prerequisite to the enjoyment of other rights – most importantly, the right to seek asylum", said today Nils Muižnieks, Council of Europe...

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Visit to France

On-site visit to detention centre of Geispolsheim

30/10/2013 Strasbourg

On 29 October the Commissioner made an on-site visit to Strasbourg and its area focused on the rights of migrants and asylum seekers. After having met local lawyers and NGOs expert in this field, he visited the migrant detention centre of Geispolsheim, where he held discussions with the staff and...

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Legal recognition of LGBTI families

25/10/2013 - 11:00 Strasbourg

In a video message at the ILGA-Europe Annual Conference "Family matters! Reaching out to hearts and minds" in Zagreb, Croatia, the Commissioner urged all European countries to give equal legal recognition to LGBTI couples and families. The European Court of Human Rights has clearly recognised...

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Irresponsible media reporting on Roma propagates negative myths

[Strasbourg, 24/10/2013 09:30] – "The long-standing problem of negative media reporting on minorities has vehemently re-emerged with the cases of the children found in Roma families in Greece and Ireland. Most news reports, not only in Europe but all over the world, have insisted on the ethnicity...

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Slovenia : Justice has to be done for all the erased

[Strasbourg, 19/10/2013 09:30] – Twenty two years have passed since the erasure of more than 25 000 persons from the Slovene Register of Permanent Residents, a decision which caused serious violations of human rights and grave suffering of the individuals concerned and their families. As a...

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