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Access to the so-called "Trophy" archives of the Russian Federation

Reply to Written question | Doc. 15259 | 08 April 2021

Committee of Ministers
Adopted at the 1400th meeting of the Ministers’ Deputies (31 March 2021). 2021 - Second part-session
Reply to Written question
: Written question no. 754 (Doc. 15148)
1. In reply to the question put by the Honourable Parliamentarian, the Committee of Ministers stresses that the purpose of the recommendations it addresses to member States is to harmonise, on the basis of the Council of Europe’s common values, European policies on important issues of interest to all member States. It nevertheless points out that the recommendations it addresses to member States are non-binding.
2. Recommendation Rec(2000)13, to which the Honourable Parliamentarian refers, applies this approach to the adoption of a European policy on access to archives, based upon common principles consistent with democratic values. It accordingly recommends that the governments of member States adopt “legislation on access to archives inspired by the principles outlined in this recommendation, or […] bring existing legislation into line with the same principles”.
3. The Committee of Ministers is fully aware of the importance of returning cultural property to other European countries and of access to archives and consequently calls on any member States which have not yet done so to implement the principles set out in Recommendation Rec(2000)13. It also asks the Steering Committee for Culture, Heritage and Landscape (CDCPP) to consider conducting a study of the implementation of the recommendation.