Strasbourg, 12.01.2010 – “Faked pandemics: a threat to health” will be one of the major themes of the next plenary session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), to be held in Strasbourg from 25 to 29 January. The PACE Social Affairs Committee has proposed the holding of an urgent debate on this subject. If the Assembly agrees when it adopts its agenda on the opening day, the debate is likely to be held on the morning of Thursday 28 January.
The committee will be holding a public hearing on the same subject on Tuesday 26 January at 8.30 am, attended by representatives of the World Health Organisation (WHO), the European pharmaceutical industry and experts on the subject.
Other highlights of the session will be the debates on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, the situation in the Middle East and action against trafficking in human beings.
With Lluís Maria de Puig coming to the end of his term of office, the Assembly is also due to elect a new President. The only candidate to date is Mevlüt Çavusoglu (Turkey, EDG).
Prominent personalities due to address the Assembly include George A. Papandreou, Prime Minister of Greece, Franco Frattini, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Italy, Micheline Calmy-Rey, Head of the Federal Department of Foreign Affairs of Switzerland and Chairperson of the Committee of Ministers of the “47”, and Thorbjørn Jagland, Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
The other topics on the agenda include, in particular, respect for media freedom, judicial corruption, the detention of asylum seekers and irregular migrants, and the functioning of democratic institutions in Albania and in Bosnia and Herzegovina.
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