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Committee reviews progress of Council of Europe States under monitoring in 2021

The Monitoring Committee today adopted its annual report taking stock of its monitoring activities in 2021 and making a series of assessments of the countries under monitoring procedure or engaged in post-monitoring dialogue, as well as of countries that are currently subject to the procedure for the periodic review of membership obligations to the Council of Europe.

There are eleven countries subject to the full monitoring procedure (Albania, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Georgia, the Republic of Moldova, Poland, the Russian Federation, Serbia, Turkey and Ukraine), and three countries engaged in post-monitoring dialogue (Bulgaria, Montenegro and North Macedonia). The periodic monitoring is currently being carried out for six States (France, Hungary, Malta, the Netherlands, Romania and San Marino).

The report, presented by Michael Aastrup Jensen (Denmark, ALDE), welcomes positive developments and progress made, and expresses concern at remaining shortcomings in each of the countries concerned, as well as making specific recommendations.

It underlines that, despite travel restrictions due to the Covid-19 pandemic, several fact-finding visits have taken place – including to Armenia, Georgia, Malta, the Republic of Moldova, the Russian Federation and Ukraine – and that in-person meetings were a necessary condition for a meaningful political dialogue.

The adopted draft resolution proposes to consider changing the current single five-year term limit for rapporteurs of a country under a full monitoring procedure or engaged in a post-monitoring dialogue “to three three-year terms”, which would allow for the recall or retention of rapporteurs for a given country. Considering the two-year period of reference insufficient for the preparation of periodic monitoring reports, the Monitoring Committee also proposed that the Committee on Rules of Procedure consider possible ways of extending this period for these reports.

Finally, the parliamentarians stressed the need for a more balanced gender representation in the nominations by the groups, both for Committee members and for rapporteur positions.