Due to renovation of the Council of Europe’s Hemicycle, the plenary sitting of the Congress in March 2024 will be held in the Hemicycle of the European Parliament 

Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya asks the Congress to support democracy in her country

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The goal of the Belarusian democratic forces was to decentralise governance and foster greater empowerment and autonomy within local communities, stressed Leader of the Belarusian democratic forces Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya addressing the Congress session on 27 March 2024. Convinced that the...

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Minister Behrens: Emergency services’ local roots make them more effective

46th session 5 April 2024 Strasbourg, France

Earthquakes, floods, fires and droughts: while natural disasters are becoming more frequent in Europe and worldwide, local and regional elected representatives highlight the crucial need to “move from crisis management to a real risk culture” embraced by all stakeholders. In a recommendation and...

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Local authorities and the environmental crisis

46th session 5 April 2024 Strasbourg, France

The thematic debate held at the Chamber of Local Authorities session on 27 March showed the need for better coordination between the different levels of governance and support for local elected representatives to respond more quickly and effectively to the triple environmental crisis of...

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Congress’ 30th anniversary: Looking ahead

46th session 3 April 2024 Strasbourg, France

During its 46th session, on 27 March 2024, the Congress held a special ceremony to celebrate its 30th anniversary. Congress President Marc Cools and Deputy Prime Minister of Liechtenstein Sabine Monauni delivered opening speeches, while President of the European Committee of the Regions Vasco...

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Exodus of services of general interest from peripheral and rural areas

46th session 4 April 2024 Strasbourg, France

Radim Srsen: “people should be encouraged to stay in rural areas or return to them” The problem is a familiar one: public services in peripheral and rural areas with declining populations deteriorate or disappear, prompting still more inhabitants to leave in turn. This vicious circle can only be...

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Congress supports democratic forces and civil society of Belarus

46th session 4 April 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Congress has joined the initiative of the Council of Europe, which has already set up a contact group with the democratic forces and civil society of Belarus. As guest speaker at the plenary session on 27 March, Belarus democratic opposition representative Sviatlana Tsikhanouskaya called for...

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Deputy Prime Minister of Liechtenstein: Reykjavik Summit reaffirmed the important role of local and regional authorities

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Council of Europe’s 4th Summit in Reykjavik recognised a crucial role played by local and regional authorities in protecting human rights, stressed Deputy Prime Minister of Liechtenstein Sabine Monauni addressing the Congress session on 27 March 2024 on behalf of the Presidency of the...

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Chamber of Regions debates the model of intercultural regions

46th session 3 April 2024 Strasbourg, France

On 27 March, the Congress’ Chamber of Regions held a round-table on “Intercultural regions: embracing diversity”, moderated by Congress Vice-President Gunn Marit Helgesen (Norway, EPP/CCE). An anti-racial approach to integration, which underpins the model of intercultural regions, was presented...

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Mykola Lukashuk: “The destruction of the Kakhovka dam deprived all of southern Ukraine of water”

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

While water is the basis of all life, our societies are not always sufficiently aware of the urgent need to protect it or the consequences of its disappearance: although recognised by the UN as a fundamental human right, access to water is still all too often hindered or flouted, according to the...

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Croatia: Council of Europe Congress welcomes improvements in local and regional governance, though gaps remain

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Council of Europe Congress of Local and Regional Authorities has adopted a set of recommendations to the Croatian government following its June 2023 monitoring of the country’s implementation of the European Charter of Local Self-Government. The report, drawn up by Gobnait Ni Mhuimneacain...

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Council of Europe Congress calls for legal recognition of the European Charter of Local Self-Government in Italy

46th session 26 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Council of Europe Congress of Local and Regional Authorities has called on Italy to reconsider the legal force of the European Charter of Local Self-Government so that local authorities can benefit fully from its protection, noting the current absence of the Charter’s legal recognition by the...

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Two years of war: Council of Europe Congress calls for greater support to Ukraine

46e session 26 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe adopted on 26 March 2024 a Declaration on thesecond anniversary of the Russian Federation’s war against Ukraine, presented by Martine Dieschburg-Nickels (Luxembourg, L, ILDG) and Gunn-Marit Helgesen (Norway, R, EPP/CCE). The...

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Congress members committed to protecting the rights of the children of Ukraine

46th session 26 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The situation of the children of Ukraine was at the heart of the debate of Congress members on Tuesday 26 March. Daria Herasymchuk, Presidential Commissioner for Children’s Rights and Child Rehabilitation, detailed the disruption to children’s rights to safety, health, and education caused by the...

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Fight the upsurge in antisemitism and anti-muslim hatred: a major challenge for European cities and regions

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The events in the Middle East have led to an unprecedented upsurge in antisemitic and anti-Muslim incidents in Europe. During the thematic debate on 26 March, Congress members shared both recent information regarding their local authorities and also best practices for preventing violence and...

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Council of Europe Congress: local elections in the Republic of Moldova well-administered but the electoral framework needs stability

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe welcomed the well-administered local elections in the Republic of Moldova held on 5 November 2023, in a recommendation adopted on 27 March 2024 during the Congress session. The recommendation, based on a report by Vladimir...

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Congress calls for a greater role for local and regional authorities at the United Nations

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

On the last day of its 46th Congress session on 28 March 2024, the Congress adopted a recommendation containing its contribution to the UN Summit of the Future. This summit will take place in New York on 22 and 23 September 2024 and will bring together Heads of State and Government from around...

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Natural disasters and climate hazards: Congress calls on local and regional authorities to be better prepared

46th session 28 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

Council of Europe member states are increasingly confronted with natural disasters and climate hazards, and local and regional authorities are in the first line to respond. To do this in the most effective, yet democratic manner, it will be crucial for local and regional authorities to develop a...

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Congress President: Local and regional authorities can usefully contribute to the execution of Court judgments

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

“Local and regional authorities can make a valuable contribution to the execution of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights on involuntary detention and treatment for mental health reasons”, stressed Congress President Marc Cools, speaking on 27 March 2024 at the Conference on "Of...

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Congress calls for greater involvement of local and regional authorities in strengthening the rule of law

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

“To help sustain democracies, the rule of law must be respected also at local level,” stressed Congress Rapporteur Stewart Dickson (United Kingdom, R, ILDG) presenting his report on “Local and Regional Authorities as Actors and Guarantors of the Rule of Law” at the Congress session on 26 March. ...

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Montenegro’s reforms welcomed, but worrying trend to centralisation must be reversed, Congress says

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Council of Europe Congress of Local and Regional Authorities has called on Montenegro to reverse a trend to centralise local government and to improve consultation procedures, especially on financial matters, while providing adequate funding for municipalities. In its recommendation based on...

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Congress committees: last meetings under the current terms of references

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The three statutory committees of Congress held their last meetings on 26 March under the current terms of reference. The Monitoring Committee approved a report on the application of the European Charter of Local Self-Government in Malta as well as the terms of reference for a report on foreign...

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Local self-government: France must pursue decentralisation and clarify division of powers, says Council of Europe Congress

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Council of Europe Congress of Local and Regional Authorities has called on France to pursue decentralisation, clarify the division of powers between the state and subnational authorities and provide better protection for mayors. Adopting its recommendation based on a report by Bryony Rudkin...

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Council of Europe Congress welcomes incorporation of local democracy and self-government principles into Norwegian law

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe has concluded that Norway’s system of local self-government worked well, but expressed its concern over the unclear procedure of consultation of local communities on changes concerning their boundaries, and the still...

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Andorra is fully committed to local self-government, concludes Council of Europe Congress

46th session 27 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Principality of Andorra seems to support local self-government fully and the level of local democracy in the country is generally satisfactory, concluded the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe in a recommendation adopted during its 46th plenary session. The...

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Secretary General marks Council of Europe 75th anniversary at Congress session

46th session 26 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić has marked the importance of the Council of Europe 75th anniversary in her speech at the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities session, coinciding with its 30th anniversary and the 10th anniversary of its youth initiative. “I am very pleased with the...

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Commissioner for Human Rights: Deterioration of human rights is most evident in the area of migration

46th session 26 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

In her statement at the Congress session, Dunja Mijatović, Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights, took stock her six-year mandate, stressing that she had “witnessed a marked deterioration in people’s ability to enjoy their human rights.” COVID-19 pandemic, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine,...

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Young Ukrainian musicians play at the opening of the 46th Congress session

46th session 26 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The 46th session of the Congress opened in Strasbourg today to the sound of the European and Ukrainian anthems played young musicians from Ukraine. The 3-day session’s agenda features debates on two years of the Russian Federation's war against Ukraine, with the adoption of a declaration, and on...

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Russia’s war against Ukraine, rising antisemitism and anti-Muslim hatred, support to Belarus democratic forces and 30th anniversary of the Congress among the themes of its 46th session

46th session 20 March 2024 Strasbourg, France

The Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe will hold its 46th Session from 26 to 28 March 2024 in Strasbourg, France. On this occasion, the Congress will hold a special ceremony on Wednesday 27 March to mark its 30th anniversary. The session’s agenda features debates...

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