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CEB launches 2021 Social Cohesion Award to recognise outstanding social action in Europe

Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) 22 January 2021 Strasbourg

The Council of Europe Development Bank (CEB) has announced the launch of the 2021 edition of the CEB Award for Social Cohesion, the annual competition to acknowledge outstanding contributions to social cohesion across Europe. With the Covid-19 pandemic disproportionately impacting the most...

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Cyberattack on the website of the European Court of Human Rights

ECHR 23 december 2020 Strasbourg

Following the delivery of the Selahattin Demirtas v. Turkey (No. 2) judgment on December 22, the website of the European Court of Human Rights was the subject of a large-scale cyberattack which has made it temporarily inaccessible. The Court strongly deplores this serious incident. The competent...

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Ireland ratifies Convention on protection of children against sexual exploitation and abuse

Lanzarote Convention 21 december 2020

Ireland has become the 48th country to ratify a landmark Council of Europe convention that requires criminalisation of sexual offences against children. Irish Ambassador Breifne O'Reilly transmitted to Council of Europe Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić the instrument of ratification of...

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Mostar: Congress concludes remote observation procedure in advance of local elections

Congress of Local and Regional Authorities 18 December 2020 Strasbourg

Welcoming the fact that, for the first time in over a decade, citizens of the city of Mostar in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH) will be able to vote at the local level on 20 December 2020, the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe conducted a remote observation...

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French Senate should amend General Security Bill to make it compatible with human rights

Commissioner for Human Rights 18 December 2020 Strasbourg

In a letter to the Chair and members of the Law Committee of the French Senate, the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, Dunja Mijatović, urges the senators to make substantial amendments to the General Security Bill to make it more human rights-compliant. The Commissioner invites the...

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Reggio Emilia and Novellara (Italy) release handbook on interreligious dialogue actions

Intercultural cities programme 17 December 2020 Strasbourg

The handbook “Valuing religious communities as key actors of social cohesion”, edited by Fondazione Mondinsieme in collaboration with the Municipalities of Reggio Emilia and Novellara, thanks to an inter-city ICC grant, is already available in English, French, Italian and Arabic. It intends to...

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2020 North-South prize focuses on right to life and climate change

North-South centre 17 December 2020 Strasbourg

The 2020 North-South Prize of the Council of Europe has been awarded to the International Commission against the Death Penalty (ICDP) and to the Mediterranean Experts on Climate and Environmental Change (MedECC) network of the Union for the Mediterranean. The jury acknowledged the unique...

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Managing Covid-19 - what role does democratic governance play?

European Committee on Democracy and Governance 17 December 2020 Strasbourg

Measures taken by Council of Europe member States in response to the situation in the Spring and Summer of 2020 are the subject of a special report of the European Committee on Democracy and Governance. Democratic governance is the participation in decision-making of those who are affected by a...

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Liechtenstein: publication of two reports on the fight against corruption

Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) 16 December 2020 Strasbourg

The Council of Europe anti-corruption body (GRECO) has published two reports on Liechtenstein: a report on incriminations and transparency of party funding and a report on the prevention of corruption in respect of members of parliaments, judges and prosecutors. In its evaluation report on the...

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Money laundering and financing of terrorism: Warsaw Convention report assesses the monitoring of banking operations

Conference of the Parties to the CETS 198 16 December 2020 Strasbourg

The Conference of the Parties of the Warsaw Convention, responsible for monitoring the implementation of the treaty, has published a report assessing the way its states parties monitor banking operations to prevent money laundering and the financing of terrorism. The report concludes that the...

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Germany: GRECO calls for more government transparency, lobbying rules and improved conflict of interest regulations

Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) 15 December 2020 Strasbourg

Germany should set up stricter rules to better prevent conflicts of interest and improve government transparency, says the Council of Europe’s Group of States against Corruption (GRECO) in its Fifth Evaluation Round report on Germany. Germany is a founding member of GRECO, since its establishment...

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New cooperation agreement between Council of Europe and OECD

Council of Europe 15 December 2020 Strasbourg

The Secretaries General of the 47-nation Council of Europe and the 37-member Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) have signed an updated cooperation agreement on the OECD’s 60th anniversary. The Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) aims to give new impetus to the...

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Intimidation, ill-treatment allegations, fear of reprisals in Ukrainian penal colonies: new report by CPT

European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) 15 December 2020 Strasbourg

The Council of Europe anti-torture Committee (CPT) has published a new report following its ad hoc visit to Ukraine in August 2020 to review the treatment of persons held in penitentiary institutions, including those sentenced to life imprisonment and to examine the action taken by the...

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GRETA: Albania makes progress in tackling human trafficking, but should do more

Group of Experts on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (GRETA) 15 December 2020 Strasbourg

In its third report on Albania’s implementation of the Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings (CETS No.197), the Council of Europe’s group of experts (GRETA) finds that some progress has been made, but cautions that more needs to be done to deal with this type of crime. GRETA...

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Albania: Venice Commission and ODIHR regret hasty adoption of amendments to constitution and electoral code

Venice Commission 14 December 2020 Strasbourg

In a joint opinion, adopted after an exchange of views with Albanian President Ilir Meta and with MP Klotilda Bushka, the European Commission for Democracy through Law (Venice Commission) and the OSCE Office for Democratic institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR), regret the extremely hasty adoption...

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CEPEJ: Artificial intelligence and cyberjustice at the heart of discussions

European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ) 11 December 2020 Strasbourg

The European Commission for the Efficiency of Justice (CEPEJ) has adopted a feasibility study on the possible establishment of a certification mechanism for artificial intelligence tools and services. The study is based on the CEPEJ Charter on the use of artificial intelligence in judicial...

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Constitutional Court of Ukraine needs reform, says Venice Commission

Venice Commission 11 December 2020 Strasbourg

The Council of Europe’s body of constitutional experts, the Venice Commission, published on 10 December its second urgent opinion on the constitutional situation in the country created after the Constitutional Court’s Decision of 27 November 2020. It says the Decision is an indication that a...

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Working together for human rights – at all times and in all places

Secretary General 10 December 2020 Strasbourg

On this Human Rights Day, we are commemorating the promulgation of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights 72 years ago. On 10 December 1948, the UN General Assembly adopted a catalogue of fundamental rights which apply equally to all individuals – regardless of their skin colour, gender,...

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Fight against corruption in Ukraine: Venice Commission says Constitutional Court Decision “regrettable”

Venice Commission 10 December 2020 Strasbourg

The Council of Europe’s constitutional expert body, the Venice Commission, has published on 9 December an urgent opinion about the effects of the recent Decision by the Ukrainian Constitutional Court on the anti-corruption legislation. The Venice Commission proposes solutions to the Verkhovna...

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European flag marks 65th anniversary

Council of Europe 9 December 2020 Strasbourg

Adopted by the Council of Europe 65 years ago, the flag with 12 yellow stars on a blue background also became the European Union’s emblem in 1985 and it is now one of the most recognisable symbols in Europe. It is synonymous with a shared political project which unites all Europeans, transcending...

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