Youth Delegates participate in the Congress for the first time [17/10/2014]
'Empowering youth: a shared responsibility for cities and regions”: was the theme of the 27th Session of the Congress held from 14 to 16 October in Strasbourg. For the first time young delegates, aged 16 to 30 years, from 34 different countries, took part in the Congress’ session and spoke at all the debates, sitting together with the members of the Congress in the hemicycle. They also participated in the meetings of the three Congress committees. On 15 October a special youth debate was on the agenda of the Session. The Youth Delegates decided on the two topics of the debate, namely “Youth (Un)employment” and “Co-management and the setting up of joint decision-making bodies”. Both topics were introduced by the Youth Delegates and debated together with members of the Congress. To ensure everyone’s voice was heard, including those who were not able to be there, comments on Twitter were screened live in the hemicycle with the hashtag #youthsession2014. On 16 October the Youth Delegates issued their recommendations to the elected representatives of the Congress, aimed at empowering young people in Europe to participate in the public debate and decision-making process.  
Council of Europe Congress issues declaration on separatist tensions in Ukraine and neighbouring countries [17/10/2014]
The Congress adopted a declaration on separatist tensions in Ukraine and neighbouring countries on 16 October, at its 27th session held in Strasbourg (France). The Congress had already condemned the annexation of Crimea and the city of Sevastopol by the Russian Federation in a declaration made at its previous session in March 2014. In the latest declaration 'condemns Russia’s military intervention in the east of Ukraine, and condemns all forms of pressure by Russia on its neighbours'. 'The security of this continent is seriously threatened by the Russian Federation’s repeated failure to comply with international rules and the principles and values of the Council of Europe that it signed up to when it joined the Organisation', states the text presented by Marc Cools (Belgium, ILDG) on behalf of the Congress Bureau. The declaration was adopted following a debate lasting some three hours, in which the speakers included: Vyacheslav Nehoda, First Deputy Minister of Regional Development of Ukraine, Valeriu Chiveri, Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and European Integration of the Republic of Moldova, Oleksii Reznikov, Deputy Mayor, Chairman of Kyiv City Council, Tengiz Shergelashvili, Deputy Minister for Regional Development and Infrastructure of Georgia, and Fikrat Mammadov, Minister of Justice of the Republic of Azerbaijan. Session 
Monitoring of local and regional democracy in Belgium [16/10/2014]
The Congress examined, on 15 October 2014, a report on the situation of local and regional democracy in Belgium on 15 October 2014, compiled after two monitoring visits carried out by Congress rapporteurs Henrik HAMMAR (Sweden, EPP/CCE) and Urs WÜTHRICH-PELLOLI (Switzerland, SOC), the first to Brussels and Tervueren on 8 and 9 October 2013 and the second to Brussels from 4 to 6 February 2014. The recommendation adopted underlines that the constitutional and legislative foundations of self-government are fully complied with throughout the country and that the scope of local self-government is generally respected. The Belgian authorities are invited to improve the procedure for consulting the communities and regions, in particular in the case of local authorities in the Walloon Region and the Brussels-Capital Region. Session 
[16/10/2014]  The role of regional media in building participatory democracy
[16/10/2014]  The Council of Europe Congress adopts partner for local democracy status
[15/10/2014]  Congress adopts a Recommendation on the local elections in Georgia
[15/10/2014]  Council of Europe Congress elects new leadership
[15/10/2014]  Fikrat Mammadov, Minister of Justice, presents recent developments of local democracy in Azerbaijan
[15/10/2014]  Promoting diversity through intercultural education and communication strategies
[15/10/2014]  Debate within the Chamber of Regions: ''Corruption corrodes democracy''
[15/10/2014]  The Congress adopts a Recommendation on the observation of pre-term local elections in Ukraine
[15/10/2014]  Congress adopts a Recommendation after first-ever observation of local elections in the Netherlands
[15/10/2014]  Leyla Güven: ''The fact that Turkey has ratified the European Charter of Local Self-government is of crucial importance to Turkish local authorities''
[14/10/2014]  Pointers for overcoming obstacles to inter-regional cooperation in Europe
[14/10/2014]  Promoting equal opportunities for people with disabilities and their participation in local and regional life
[14/10/2014]  Jean-Claude Frécon elected President of the Congress
[14/10/2014]  Greater decentralisation and more democracy at the grassroots is what Europe needs today, says Herwig van Staa
[09/10/2014]  Local and regional democracy, separatist tensions and youth participation among the highlights of the 27th Session
[13/10/2014]  European Local Democracy Week 2014 ‘Participatory democracy: sharing, proposing, deciding’
[13/10/2014]  The Alliance and ROMACT identify reinforcing political will and building administrative capacities for Roma inclusion at local and regional level as essential to a successful integration of Roma

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