Strasbourg, 10.06.2011 – Addresses by Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovych (Tuesday 21) and Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan (Wednesday 22) will be among highlights of the summer plenary session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) in Strasbourg on 20-24 June 2011.
Support for fledgling Arab democracies will be the main theme on Tuesday, when the parliamentarians will decide on the Moroccan Parliament’s request for “Partner for Democracy” status with the Assembly, followed by statements from the Speakers of both chambers of the Parliament, Abdelwahed Radi and Mohamed Cheikh Biadillah. Tunisian Foreign Affairs Minister Mohamed Mouldi Kefi will also take part in a debate on the situation in Tunisia.
This will be followed by a joint debate on sharing responsibilities for asylum seekers and refugees in Europe, and on the interception and rescue at sea of asylum seekers, refugees and irregular migrants. A number of refugees and asylum seekers who have come together to form a “living library” will be present during session week to share their personal experiences.
Wednesday sees a debate on follow-up to the report of the Council of Europe Group of Eminent Persons “Living together in 21st century Europe”. Bulgarian Foreign Minister Nikolay Mladenov will also address the Assembly on the same day.
On Thursday, the Assembly holds its biennial debate on the state of human rights in Europe. German Federal Justice Minister Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger and the Attorney General for England and Wales Dominic Grieve will take part in a joint debate on national parliaments as guarantors of human rights in Europe, and on the role of parliaments in the consolidation and development of social rights in Europe. This will be followed by the ceremony to award the Parliamentary Assembly’s Human Rights Prize for 2011 to the Russian NGO “Committee against Torture”.
Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Gryshchenko will present the Communication from the Committee of Ministers to the Assembly on Monday afternoon, and answer questions from parliamentarians. On Wednesday, there will also be a debate on reform of the Assembly.
Source:PACE. Published in Strasbourg on 10 June 2010