Debates on beating Covid-19 with public health measures, on combating rising hate against LGBTI people in Europe and alleged violations of their rights in the Southern Caucasus, on football governance – with an intervention by FIFA President Giovanni Infantino – and on the poisoning of Alexei Navalny were among highlights of the 2022 Winter Session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), held from 24 to 28 January in a hybrid format.
On 27 January the Assembly held a special event to mark the International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust, with messages from Shoah survivors Eva Clarke and Liliana Segre and French President Emmanuel Macron. French Education, Youth and Sports Minister Jean-Michel Blanquer and Italian Education Minister Patrizio Bianchi will also address the parliamentarians. The event was followed by a debate on the Observatory on History Teaching in Europe.
At the opening of the Session, the Assembly elected Tiny Kox as new President. Željko Komšić, Chairperson of the Presidency of Bosnia and Herzegovina, also addressed the parliamentarians. The Assembly held its usual exchange of views with the Italian Presidency of the Committee of Ministers. Council of Europe Secretary General Marija Pejčinović Burić presented her communication to the Assembly.
The PACE held a current affairs debate on “Recent challenges to security in Europe: what role for the Council of Europe?”
Also on the agenda were debates on the role of the media in times of crisis, the EU pact on migration and asylum seen from a human rights perspective, children's right to be heard in a democracy and on climate change, enforced disappearances on Council of Europe territory, and the functioning of democratic institutions in Armenia.