We, the undersigned, declare the following:
On 16 March 2022, the Russian Federation was expelled from the Council of Europe. Despite this fact, following the Secretary General’s notes to the Committee of Ministers on the staff matters, approximately 80 Russian staff members will/may continue their employment within the Organisation.
Continued employment of these staff members is contrary to the Organisation’s well-established rule that only citizens of member States may be employed.
Their continued employment poses a risk to the climate of trust which must be maintained and strengthened between the Organisation and the governments of member States, especially those which are direct victims of the Russian aggression.
Most Russian staff members are engaged in advisory and/or managerial duties, as administrators. At least 20 are directly involved in and/or responsible for the decision-making process regarding the Organisation’s policies, strategies, and activities. A decision to retain such staff creates a ground for potential conflict of interest in the functioning of the Organisation, given its mission, and undermines its credibility.
We urge the leadership of the Organisation to be consistent in their staff policy with the unanimous political position of the member States towards the Russian Federation and take urgent appropriate measures to terminate all such contracts.