In his address to the Assembly today, the Italian Undersecretary of State of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Co-operation, Benedetto Della Vedova, described the Council of Europe as “an outpost” and "continental emblem of the protection of human rights and fundamental freedoms”, representing “the expression of a multilateral vocation in which Italy fully identifies”.
He underlined the Italian Presidency's willingness to promote its commitment to common values and principles, focusing on issues of common interest such as culture, legal instruments available to States to deal with the pandemic, the protection of social rights and inter-religious dialogue.
Mr Della Vedova also mentioned the main developments within the Committee of Ministers since October, and announced a number of events organised in the framework of the Italian Presidency with regards to its priorities.
He stressed the importance of the “principle of respect for the territorial integrity of States and the principle of peaceful resolution of conflicts”. “We hope that the Council of Europe, even if it does not include security issues among its institutional tasks, will continue to provide a forum for dialogue and exchange,” he said.
“We believe it is essential to continue working together with the Parliamentary Assembly, respecting the respective competences, and we will endeavour to further develop communication between the two bodies, trying to exploit any possible synergy,” Mr Della Vedova concluded.