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The French Presidency is ‘politically symbolic’ as the Council of Europe marks its 70th anniversary

In her opening speech to the Standing Committee today in Paris, PACE President Liliane Maury Pasquier gave her full support to the priorities of the French Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers and recalled the “very special symbolic political significance” of this presidency which comes as the organisation marks its 70th anniversary.

“France, a founding member and birthplace of the 1789 Declaration of the Rights of Man and the Citizen and the 1791 Declaration of the Rights of Women and the Citizen, has always been a major player in the defence of our values,” she said.

Welcoming the decisions taken by the Committee of Ministers in Helsinki, the President explained that in order to give effect to “these consistent decisions, the Assembly should still take certain decisions, in particular as regards when and under what conditions national delegations may be presented to the Assembly, with a view to a possible examination of the credentials of the delegations of Bosnia and Herzegovina and the Russian Federation during our June part-session”.

“In addition, we should return to the issue of the credentials of delegations and the rights of members, which may be limited in the event of a challenge to them,” she added.

Finally, she announced the holding of a meeting of the Joint Committee, bringing together PACE members and the Committee of Ministers in order to strengthen the organisation's capacity to react when member states violate their statutory obligations.