Addressing the Standing Committee in Nicosia today, Cypriot Foreign Minister Ioannis Kasoulides gave an overview of the country’s priorities for its Chairmanship of the Council of Europe Committee of Ministers, underlining in particular the enhancement of democratic security in Europe. “We need to invest in democratic institutions, transparent processes, pluralistic and inclusive societies that foster tolerant and democratically active citizens,” he said.
“Building synergies is another important element in fostering democratic security,” Mr Kasoulides stated, adding that he Cypriot Chairmanship will focus on enhancing dialogue and co-operation with regional and international partners.
He also referred to some of the major thematics underpinning Cyprus’ priorities, in particular the protection of cultural heritage. “We will do our outmost to promote the efforts to finalise the new Convention on Offences related to Cultural Property,” he stressed, announcing a Colloquium, on “Initiatives to strengthen international capacities for the protection of cultural property and the prevention of illicit trafficking in cultural goods” in January 2017.
Cyprus takes over the Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers for the 5th time since its accession in 1961.