The members of the Congress Monitoring Committee met in Strasbourg, France, on February 14, 2018.
At the opening of the meeting, Committee Chair Leendert VERBEEK (SOC, Netherlands) presented the results of the committee’s work in 2017 and the prospects for monitoring activities in 2018. The Congress Director Jean-Philippe BOZOULS also provided members with information on the budgetary situation of the Council of Europe and the Congress, and the consequences on the monitoring and election observation activities.
On the agenda of this meeting were the examination for adoption of the reports on the situation of local democracy in Andorra, Monaco, Liechtenstein, San Marino and Latvia. The Committee will also adopt the report on the fact-finding mission to the Republic of Moldova concerning the situation of local elected representatives, as well as the report on the observation of municipal elections in "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia" (15 October 2017), and the information report on the municipal elections in Georgia (21 October 2017).
Harald BERGMANN (ILDG, Netherlands), Congress Spokesperson on Human Rights, presented the draft resolution on human rights which highlights, in particular, the need to promote human rights at the local and regional level. In this regard, a Human Rights Handbook has been prepared to provide local and regional elected representatives and their administrations with examples of initiatives undertaken across Europe for three target groups: refugees and migrants, Roma and travellers, and LGBTI. This first manual will be complemented, with the same pragmatic approach, by other thematic issues relating to human rights and their practical implementation at the grassroots level. A draft resolution containing the manual was approved by the Monitoring Committee and will be presented for adoption at the next Congress session (28 &29 March 2018).