PACE Spring session

Strasbourg 19-22 April 2021
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On the occasion of the German Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Minister of State for Europe Michael Roth will participate in the Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) spring session, which will take place in a hybrid format. The President of the European Parliament, David Sassoli, the President of the Republic of Moldova, Maia Sandu, and the Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Marija Pejčinović Burić, will also address PACE. At this session, the Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatović, will present her 2020 annual report and the Assembly will award its Václav Havel Human Rights Prize.

There have been requests for urgent debates on “The arrest and detention of Alexei Navalny in January 2021” and on “The functioning of democratic institutions in Turkey”, as well as for current affairs debates on “Covid passes or certificates: protection of fundamental rights and legal implications” and on “Armenian prisoners of war and other captives”.

Topics on the agenda include a debate on the Assembly’s vision of the Council of Europe’s strategic priorities and a joint debate on human rights violations and the need for electoral reform in Belarus. The OECD’s work on taxing the digital economy with the participation of its Secretary General Ángel Gurría, discrimination against people with chronic and long-term illnesses, post-monitoring dialogue with Montenegro, the preservation of national minorities and a European policy on diasporas will also be discussed.

Draft order of business - Webcast - Spring session 2021 special page


Word Forum of Democracy - The Nature of Biodiversity: Involving Local Stakeholders for Global Change on the menu of April

Online event (4:30-6 p.m. CEST) 22 April 2021
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Alongside climate change, the unprecedented biodiversity loss due to human activity presents a global emergency. The preservation of biodiversity is essential for meeting global climate goals and protecting the wellbeing of people and society as a whole. The April’s Forum Lab will look at projects that combine real ambition with strong commitment from local communities for the protection of local biodiversity: from Ireland, India, Switzerland and South Africa.

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


Also…

19 April, Strasbourg (10:50 a.m. CEST)

Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić will participate together with the President of the Republic of Moldova, Maia Sandu, on the official launch of the Action Plan for the Republic of Moldova. The action plan aims to bring the country’s legislation, institutions and practice further in line with European standards in the areas of human rights, the rule of law and democracy. Only the opening of the event is open to media.

More information - Webcast - Contact: Jaime Rodriguez, tel. +33 6 89 99 50 42


20 April, Strasbourg

The European Court of Human Rights will notify in writing 12 judgments concerning Bulgaria, Germany, Romania, Russia, Serbia and Ukraine.

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


20 April, online event (11 a.m. CEST)

A conference will be organised by the joint European Union/Council of Europe action “Promotion of diversity and equality in Serbia” to present the main findings of the “Report on the use of hate speech in Serbian media”. Tobias Flessenkemper, Head of the Council of Europe Office in Belgrade, Brankica Janković, Commissioner for the protection of equality of Serbia and Ambassador Sem Fabrizi, Head of the Delegation of the European Union to Serbia are expected to give introductory remarks.

The event will be open to media upon preliminary registration no later than 2 p.m. on 19 April.

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


22 April, Strasbourg

The European Committee of Social Rights will issue a statement on Covid-19 and social rights. With this statement the Committee will aim to highlight and provide guidance on those European Social Charter rights that are particularly affected by the Covid-19 crisis such as employment and labour rights, the right to social security, social and medical assistance, the right to be protected against poverty and social exclusion, the right to housing and education. The statement will also address the rights of children and families, women, older persons and persons with disabilities.

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


22 April, Strasbourg

The European Court of Human Rights will notify in writing 43 judgments and/or decisions concerning Azerbaijan, Croatia, Georgia, Greece, Italy, Latvia, Norway, Poland, Romania, Russia, Turkey, Ukraine and United-Kingdom.

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


22 April, online event (4-5:30 p.m. CEST)

A webinar will be organised on the implications of the new Digital Services Act (DSA) package for Video on demand (VOD) services.

The DSA package is a so-called horizontal regulatory framework, that applies to any online intermediary service. Regarding the audiovisual sector, this means that video-sharing platforms will be subject to the new rules, but not broadcasting or VOD services.

This webinar will help analyse which regulatory tools apply to audiovisual media services such as VOD services with a potential gateway function on the market.

More information - Registration - Contact: Giuseppe Zaffuto, tel.+33 6 86 32 10 24


23 April, online event (10 a.m.-12 p.m. CEST)

The Council of Europe and the Ministry of Welfare of the Republic of Latvia will organise an expert debate to address the issue of establishing specialist support services for victims of violence against women and domestic violence in Latvia. The main aims of the event are to present the “Roadmap for establishing specialist support services for victims of violence against women and domestic violence in Latvia in line with the Council of Europe standards” (report in Latvian) and discuss actions to be taken; raise awareness of violence against women and domestic violence; and exchange good practices and experiences of the Council of Europe member States.

The event will be open to media: registration can be made until 21 April.

Programme in English; in Latvian

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


23-26 April, Albania

An 18-member PACE delegation, led by Aleksander Pociej will observe the conduct of the parliamentary elections in Albania, alongside observers from the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly and the OSCE Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR). The delegation will have remote meetings, in particular, with the Minister of Internal Affairs, leaders and representatives of political parties and coalitions, the Head of the Central Election Commission, as well as with representatives of civil society and the media, before travelling to Albania for observing the ballot on 25 April.

A joint press conference is scheduled in Tirana on Monday 26 April (place and time to be confirmed).


Contacts Contacts

Council of Europe Media Relations Division:
 

pressunit@coe.int
 

+33 3 88 41 25 60