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Current affairs debate on the arrest and detention of Alexei Navalny in January 2021

27/01/2021 | Session

The Parliamentary Assembly, during its “hybrid” winter session, held a current affairs debate on the arrest and detention of Alexei Navalny in January 2021. Jacques Maire (France, ALDE), who is currently preparing a report on the poisoning of Mr Navalny, opened the debate and 31 other members...

Some States must stop applying restrictions on NGO activities

27/01/2021 | Session

During a debate in plenary session, PACE deplored that civil society space was shrinking in several member States and that restrictive legislation and regulations were still being applied, particularly in Azerbaijan, the Russian Federation and Turkey. It is concerned, in particular, about...

Increasing legal and political difficulties hinder the implementation of Strasbourg Court judgments

26/01/2021 | Session

Despite progress in the implementation of Strasbourg Court judgments and a constant reduction in the number of judgments pending before the Committee of Ministers – from around 10,000 in 2010 to 5 231 at the end of 2019, thanks to the reform following the 2010 Interlaken conference – PACE remains...

Judges in Poland and Moldova must remain independent, says PACE

26/01/2021 | Session

PACE has urged authorities in Poland and the Republic of Moldova to take a series of steps to uphold the rule of law and ensure judicial independence. Approving a resolution based on a report by Andrea Orlando (Italy, SOC), the Assembly condemned “the campaign of intimidation waged by the...

Bjørn Berge elected Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe

26/01/2021 | Session

Bjørn Berge (Norway) was elected today by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) as the Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe by 185 votes to 112 for the other candidate, Leyla Kayacik (Turkey). He will take up office on 1 March 2021 for a period of five years and...

Despina Chatzivassiliou-Tsovilis, first woman elected Secretary General of the Parliamentary Assembly

26/01/2021 | Session

Today the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) elected Despina Chatzivassiliou-Tsovilis to the post of Secretary General of the Assembly, the first woman to hold the post in the Assembly’s 72-year history. She will serve for a five-year term starting on 1 March 2021 replacing...

Heiko Maas urges PACE not to burn bridges

26/01/2021 | Session

In a speech to the Assembly today, the Chair of the Committee of Ministers, German Foreign Minister Heiko Maas, paid tribute to the Council of Europe, referring to it as an “institutional pillar of our united continent” setting “human rights protection standards worldwide with the European...

PACE elects Andreas Zünd judge to the European Court of Human Rights in respect of Switzerland

26/01/2021 | Session

The Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) today elected Andreas Zünd as judge to the European Court of Human Rights in respect of Switzerland. Mr Zünd, having obtained an absolute majority of votes cast, is elected a judge of the European Court of Human Rights for a term of office of...

PACE elects Ioannis Ktistakis judge to the European Court of Human Rights in respect of Greece

26/01/2021 | Session

The Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) today elected Ioannis Ktistakis as judge to the European Court of Human Rights in respect of Greece. Mr Ktistakis, having obtained an absolute majority of votes cast, is elected judge of the European Court of Human Rights for a term of office of...

Didier Reynders: ‘Respect for the rule of law cannot be taken for granted, even within the EU’

26/01/2021 | Session

“The rule of law is of fundamental importance, as it guarantees the protection of all other values, including democracy and respect for fundamental rights. Unfortunately, respect for the rule of law cannot be taken for granted, even within the Union,” declared the European Commissioner for...

Joint procedure between the Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly: PACE amends its Rules of...

26/01/2021 | Session

By adopting a resolution today, on the basis of the report by Sir Edward Leigh (United Kingdom, EC/AD), PACE has decided to amend its Rules of Procedure to enable the implementation of a complementary joint procedure between the Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly in response to...

The Assembly elects its Vice-Presidents

25/01/2021 | Session

At the opening of its Winter plenary Session today, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) elected its Vice-Presidents: Laima Liucija Andrikienė (Lithuania)José Badia (Monaco)Theodora Bakoyannis (Greece)Gusty Graas (Luxembourg)John Howell (United Kingdom)Kimmo Kiljunen...