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Home arrow newsitems arrow Industry/Research Committee Chair f.EUParliament President Buzek to EF: Digital EU Cloud on Science+

Industry/Research Committee Chair f.EUParliament President Buzek to EF: Digital EU Cloud on Science+

Written by ACM
Wednesday, 15 February 2017
 f._president_of_eu_parliament_j._buzek_to_eufofora_400_03
 
  *Strasbourg/EU Parliament/Angelo Marcopolo/- In Exclusive Statements to "Eurofora", the Chairman of EU Parliament's Industry, Research and Energy Committee (ITRE), and former President of EU Parliament, professor Jerzy Buzek, a ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP from Poland, explained the main reasons for which the planned creation of a European "Cloud" of Computer Data would Benefit EU Citizens, the Economy and Science, both at Home and Abroad, being a Modern Technology Opportunity to seize, by overcoming any eventual challenges.
 

Particularly nowadays, when Public Debates on "Europe's Future" are growing, Both inside EU Pariiament, (with 3 Political Reports during this Plenary Session) and outside, also in view of the forthcoming, Exceptional EU Heads of State/Government Summit at Rome, for the 60th Anniversary of the EU Treaties, due to Highlight some New Horizons, at Rome (Italy), on March 2017.


However, Dreaming on 2016-2017 about the imminent Creation of European Digital "Clouds" didn't start on the Sky, but down on Earth, at Strasbourg's Political, EU Experts and Civil Society Meetings' level, already from 2012-2013, as "Eurofora"s personal Experience attests :


- An Early Proposal around a Digital EU "Cloud", initialy focusing on Legal Rules' framework only, has been made since 2013, during an Annual Cyber-Security Legal, Economic, ICT Experts and Politicians' Conference of Franco-German-Swiss "Superior Rhine" Euro-Region in Strasbourg, to which "Eurofora" had been Invited and actively participated : In particular, this was a main idea of a Key Expert, Senior Official of the French National Security Agency for Information Systems (ANSSI), Philippe Wolf, advanced in an Interview with "Eurofora" : See, f.ex., also : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/cyberattaksandeurules.html ).


But it was, Initialy, already at the Beginning of 2012, that an Experienced MEP, former Chairman of EU Parliament's "STOA" Committee on Scientific/Technological Options' Assessment, Paul Rübig from Austria, (ChristianDemocrat/EPP), in cooperation with his successor, Portuguese former Minister Antionio de Campors (SocialDemocrat), Replied to "Eurofora" Questions in a Press Conference in Strasbourg, about foreseable Future Projects "in the Coming Years", by pointing, at the 1st Place, to "Cloud Computing", (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/euscienceoptionsandcitizens.html ).


Moreover, an interesting PanEuropean/International Conference on "Clouds" data in relation with the Global Fight against Cyber-Crime was organized by CoE's "Budapest" Convention Experts' body on 2015 in Strasbourg, where CoE's Anti-CyberCrime Director, Alexander Seger, spoke to "Eurofora" about the Need for relevant Capacity-Building and potential Victims' Protection, (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/coecybercrimedirectoroncapacitybuilding.html ).


=> That Rübig's and Wolf's moves proved to be Premonitory :

 

eu_cloud_computing_network_400


- On February 2017, such Pioneer but sketchy Ideas, have become now a seriously documented and Fully-Fledged Official EU Parliament's Report, drafted by ITRE's experienced Chairman, President Buzek, Debated (on Wednesday) and Voted (on Thursday) by MEPs this Week in Strasbourg, on a 2016 initiative launched by EU Commission, which was presented here by EU Commissioner in charge of Scientific Research and Technology Development, Carlos Moedas, (for Other EU Commissioner Moedas' Statements to "Eurofora", see, f.ex., also : ....).


- "We can say that, in the case of Cloud Computing, the most Crucial Issues are about Using that, very Widely, in Science" matters mainly, President Buzek observed from the outset, in Reply to an "Eurofora" Question, Earlier this week.


- "Because we (Europeans) haven't done that yet, until now", and "this is Incredible !", he regretted, (given also the rapidly growing Globbal Competition in this key ICT crossroads area).


- But "Cloud Computing for Research, for Sciences, is of Crucial Importance" nowadays, ITRE's Experienced Chairman (who is also a former University Professor in Physics), underlined.


- "And, ... we, in Europe, could be in the Best role in the World ! ", President Buzek, (who has a large Experience also as former EU Parliament's Rapporteur on the Science and Technology Funding, Mutli-Annual Program "Horizon"), optimisticaly Highlighted.  


- "Because, as you know, we (EU) have more than 550 Millions Citizens, and a Lot of Universities, while Science and Research is advancing forward", he noted.


- Success depends also on "whether we (EU) Start Immediately with Cloud Computing, to go through all the Technicaclities, as soon as possible", EU Parliament's competent Rapporteur urged.


+ When "Eurofora" observed that f.ex. our Natural Science's Advisor, Dr. Constantin Marcopoulos, who is currently working as Professor mainly on Physics and Chemistry etc. in China, during a recent visit to France and Germany (2017) said that he Needs an Efficient and Safe "Cloud" for his Original Documents, and Asked Buzek if it is Possible for the EU to Develop such Computer Clouds which would be physically accessible to Users all over the World, ITRE's Chairman replied very Positively : -  "I think so. Yes, Absolutely ! This is (part of) our (EU's) Task".


-------------------------------


- Speaking, Later-on, in an EU Parliament's Plenary Debate with MEPs on Buzek's Report, EU Commissioner for Science and Innovation Carlos Moedas (Comp. Supra), stressed from the outset EU's "Ambition  of ensuring that science, businesses, public services could reap all the benefits of the so-called ‘Big Data revolution’. Today we produce 2.5 billion – billion – bytes of Data per day. That is, as someone once put it, 4 Eiffel Towers of Blu-ray Discs per Day, so the fundamental Question for us tonight is really How we should deal with it, and the Cloud Initiative is part of the answer".


 - EU Commission "proposed the creation of an inclusive, European, open science cloud, deploying an efficient European data Infrastructure to address such enormous data flows and Opening up the User base to the Public sector and Industry", he resumed in this regard.


- For this purpose, on 2017, "We (EU Commission) are now Discussing sustainable funding and implementation instruments with the Member States, research infrastructures, scientific communities and other key players". "First, on the European Open Science Cloud the Commission is preparing a roadmap for Governance and Financing to be presented to, and discussed with, the Member States in the course of 2017. ...We want our 1.7 Million European Scientists to have the best services for text and data Mining, the best data Management plans, and the best Training programmes. We made Open data the default in "Horizon 2020" (EU Research Funding Program), starting in 2017. In other words, we kind of transformed an exception into a rule", Moedas said.


+ And "We (EU) will Fund a Pilot Project ...to ensure that the Governance in the European Open Science Cloud is truly representative of European Science" and "creates Synergies". "Over the Year, ...we will define a Governance board before the end of 2017 and we will work on making all our research Data fair; Findable, so scientists can identify each piece of data in a unique way; Accessible, so it can always be obtained freely; Interoperable, because science is today at the intersection of disciplines; and ReUsable, because you cannot lose important data after you have used it, you have to be able to use it in different disciplines at different times", he promised.


 - Concerning "the European Data InfraStructure", "a European high performance Computing Strategy (is) under development with Member States and European Industry", which "includes a Pooling of the necessary Investments at all levels to create a World-class ...computing and big data ecosystem by 2023", due "to be built on 2 Exascale Computers. That means a billion operations per second, which is basically 1.000 times Faster than today’s supercomputers", the competent EU Commissioner Highlighted.


 - This "requires seamless user-friendly Access, with appropriate levels of data Protection, Security and services, to ensure Trust and Confidence", he admitted. "So,...on 10 January last, the Commission adopted the Communication on Building a European Data Economy", "dealing with additional big data issues : It advocates reducing barriers to the Free Flow of data. It looks into questions of Ownership, Access to data, Liability", and  "puts emphasis on ...Open and Competitive economy, without unjustified lock-in effects.


+ Citting "a recent Visit" f.ex. to a "Bio-Informatics Institute" at Nearby "Heidelberg", Moedas observed that it had "made" a "Choice" for "Scientific Information Freely Available to the Global Science Community", and pointed out that "This is the Way we (EU Commission) are Going".


- Meanwhile, however, he also said to be "deeply committed to Engaging with All relevant Stakeholders", as well as to "Consider several Proposals, on the Supply and Demand side, and on the Extension to SMEs", as he promised.


-------------------------------------


However, during the EU Parliament's debate, despite an overall Positive, in principle, Welcome by most MEPs, among some Criticism was also f.ex., on behalf of the Conservative/Reformist Group, (mainly UK-driven), MEP Krasnodebski's call to Better Focus on the "Industry sector" and "the realities of the Market", instead of a "Centralized" EU "Commission"'s "Intereference", as he said, expressing also a Reserve about EU's estimation of an "Additional Public-private Investment of 4,7 Billions €" "within 5 Years".


He didn't, however, go as far as the Euro-Sceptic British MEP Diane James, who lated spoke on behalf of "Independent" MEPs, Criticizing a "forecast" to "Cost 6,7 Billions €, including a 4,7 financial Shortfall", which would "mean that no one knows Where almost 5 Billions € ... will be Found", so that, Other, "Existing Global, and fully International Alternatives", might be, perhaps, preferable, according to her opinion.

On the Contrary, "EuroLeft" Group's representative, MEP Marisa Matias from Portugal, found "Necessary ... that the (EU) system is maintained in the Public domain, guaranteeing the use and access to the entire community, from researchers to SMEs, ...secondly, to ensure the portability and interoperability of the data; in the third place, to Protect the personal data", as she stressed.

- On behalf of the "Green" Group, MEP Judith Sargentini, denouced the Fact that, until now, "we do store very often data Outside the EU, and that is Not Good, because outside our jurisdiction, we can Not Protect Governments, Businesses, Scientists and Citizens", while f.ex. "US Companies and NSA watch", as well as some "Russian companies", etc., while, nowadays, "Personal Infrmation is extremely Important" to safeguard. Therefore, EU's "Cloud Initiative" could be also "Good for our Wallets and for our Privacy", particularly if EU Ciommission "Stop Listening to (some) American Companies that would like to have a Monopoly on the Cloud", such as, f.ex. "Hewlett-Packard and Amazon", etc.. "By EnForcing Open Standards" for All, "we (EU) could Reduce that Risk", awhile "also, our (EU's) Data Protection Laws, by keeping the (EU) Cloud very Safe, can Offer even to Foreign Companies, (and/or) Out of the EU, some very Good Opportunities", she observed.


- French MEP Jean-Luc Schaffhauser, (who had been, initialy, the Rapporteur for that Issue"), speaking on behalf of the "Nations and Freedoms" Group (Rightists), stressed from the outset that his main "Concern was to Keep, ... Both the Software and the Harware, for really European Businesses, i.e. Headquartered in the EU, Producing in Europe, and having European Capital". But also "to Monitor Security" and "the concept of Openess, ... so that it doesn't serve only some Foreign Powers", as he Warned, in addition to "Protecting the Data, according the Principle hat they Belong to those who Produce them", as he said.


But, together with "a Team of 25 Experts and 5 Coordinators (MEPs), specialized in this field, we Found ... that even some among the Leading European Companies had Not been Consulted", as he claimed, while, moreover, EU Commission had chosen to "Put Huge (Financial) Means on Super-Computers, but Abandoned the Quantic (Tech) or Other Sectors, as, f.ex. the Micro-Processors, which represent 2O Times more than the Market of SuperComputers", so that this all risked to Benefit "mainly the Foreign Lobbies", in his view.


-----------------


 - Experienced, mainstream ChristianDemocrat/EPP MEP Paul Rübig from Austria, one of EU's Pioneers in the domain of "Cloud Computing" (Comp. Supra), Welcomed EU Commission's initiative, as a means to "Strengthen Europe", and Advised to Better use the potential "Bonuses" of the "Protection of Personal Data, in a Trusted European Cloud".


- F.ex., a "Cloud Select Industry Group has sought a Code of Conduct, ...set for European Standards", "so that the European Cloud Industry gets in this area a Strong Role", also at "a Global" level, Rübig stressed, while also Saluting the presence of "ENISA and ETSI's Key players" at EU Parliament, Hoping that EU's Initiative "would Really Bring a sustainable Success for European SMEs".


=> For that purpose, "We (EU) also Need a Cloud Computing Compliance-Monitoring Catalog System, to set Standards, (and) enable us to Avoid Distrust and Crisis of Confidence, in this area". In Fact, "we (EU) Need a European Cloud "Quality Seal", for the "Data Storage to European Cloud Providers, in European Data Centers", with "the full Source Code Available in Europe", as well as, "we Need the European Law, and the European (EU and/or CoE) Rules on Data Protection, to apply to the (EU) Cloud a Quality Seal", Rübig urged.


 - When this will be achieved, "then, EU Taxes ... and IT Services will be Able to Contribute (to Fund and Support) our InfraStructure", the experienced Top MEP concluded.


------------------------------------


+ Spanish MEP Jose Blanco Lopez, added a Wish "to make it possible for All Regions of the EU to participate, withOut New Gaps".


Dutch MEP Lumbert van Nistelrooij, observed that in several EU Countries, already, "New Academies Combining Big Data, Science, Ethics, and Entrepreneurship", were "Starting", Hoping that EU would "Not Repeat what had happened during the Last Years, when we Lost Time (f.ex.) vis a vis the USA", as he found.


Greek Conservative MEP Notis Marias, observed that "Revenues from EU's Cloud Computing could reach 80 Billions € until 2020". But he also reminded that "Protection of Personal and other Sensitive Data should have a Priority on the Free Flow of data", while also, "any European Policy" on this field, "should respond to the Needs and Benefit SMEs, and particularly Consumers, both at an EU, National, Regional and Local level", as he said.


-------------------


- In Reply, EU Commissioner Moedas, from Portugal, anew Stressed that "Open Data is the Future, and Locking up is the Past", urging  "Not o Miss this Boat of  Open Access, Open Data, Open Science, and Openness to the World", as "this (EU) Cloud is about being Able to Mine text and Data, Better than others, and about having Access to Information that can create Ideas" and "Jobs", as he said.


+ However, at the same time, he also Promised to "Speed Implementation, Invest in a World-leading Capacity, set up a Governance structure ...truly Representative of European Science", and "Protect People's Data and Privacy", as well as "Ensure that European Industry and Public Sector Benefit from that".


------------------------------------------------


>>> President Buzek's Draft Report supports such an "European Open Science Cloud" (EOSC), particularly after observing the fact that "Countries like USA, China Japan and Russia are seriously Investing in such Systems", while also stressing that it "should be Developed with due regard for the Fundamental Rights enshrined in (EU's) Charter ..., in particular the Rights of Data Protection, Privacy, Liberty and Security", as well as to Benefit also SMEs, be associated with a Wider Access to Broadband Internet for the People, throughout Regions, and by engaging with Civil Society Together with all other relevant European stakeholders.


-----------------------------------------------


An Alternative Draft Resolution, presented in the form of an Amendment by the "Nations and Freedoms" Group of Rightist MEPs, warned, inter alia, also about "US Intelligence Services" allegedly "advocating Maximum Openness", observed that f.ex. "China requires every Cloud Operator to have a Minimum of 50% of Chinese Capital", Regretted that EU "Commission (allegedly) Failed to Consult the only European Producer of MicroProcessors, ... or Europe's largest Cloud Computing Company, although it did Consult their Non-European Rivals", Urges to use "Free (EU) Linux Software" in order to "Save... Tens of Billions €" and "allow the European Digital Sector to play a Leading role", Calls to consider a Company as "European" "only if its Office and ..Decision making centers, Manufacturing Sites, are on European Territory, and if it's Controlled by European Capital, and subject to consolidated Tax" here, (instead of merely having "a European Subsidiary", as EU Commission allegedly would estimate), Denounces "Storing or Processing Data Outside of Europe", as "tantamount to Killing off EU's Digital Economy", asks for "Governance" to be "under European Jurisdiction", asks to "encourage and Fund the writing of Secure Free Software" in Europe, particularly "with Linux", and to "massively Invest in (EU's) SemiConductor Industry", as well as "to adopt High Encryption standards", (a point also made in Buzek's Draft), and Concluded by calling to ensure that "anyone Using .. Data should Remunerate the Data Provider", with "Dissuassive Fines on Companies illegaly using Data", so that "Europe" could become "a Safe Haven for Data Storage in the World", as it claimed.


------------------------------------------------


As a whole, that Text was, however, Rejected by a strong EU Parliament's Majority of at least 535 MEPs, against only about 40 and 5 Abstentions.


While, on the Contrary, President Buzek's Draft Resolution, (which Included some Responses to several among those Concerns : Comp. partly Supra), was clearly Adopted by EU Parliament, with a Crystal-clear absolute Majority of 444 Votes in Favour, and Only almost 144 Dissident Votes, (Against or Abstentions), i.e. supported by More than 3/4 of MEPs.


-----------------------------------

(../..)


***

(NDLR : Partly Updated on Thursday, February 16, 2017).

+

("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora" Subscribers/Donors, earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version, might be published asap).

***


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People in Europe and the World expect from CoE to make a succes of its "Monitoring" for Human Rights and Democracy, despite difficulties, said Finland's President Tarja Halonen to "EuroFora" at a crucial moment for the mecanism built 15 years ago by the paneuropean organization which celebrates its 60th Anniversary in 2009.

Halonen, known as "Mother" of CoE's "Monitoring" mecanism, a long-time MEP and former Foreign Minister before becoming Finland's President, holds a long experience in the mattter, after also serving twice as CoE and EU Chairwoman in the past. That's why she is well placed to judge how CoE's "monitoring" should deal today with some crucial issues of importance both to CoE and to the EU.

The move came just a Month before a crucial, last visit to Turkey, scheduled for June, by the President of CoE''s "Monitoring" Committee, Ukranian MEP Serge Holovaty, to finalize his Report on Ankara, the CoE Member State with the longest Monitoring procedure. From its results depends its overall credibility.

This is a Test-case, because, in fact, it's in order to avoid Sanctions threatened against Turkey by a CoE's Assembly's April 1995 Resolution for grave Human Rights violations, Democracy gaps, the continuing Military Occupation in Cyprus, the unresolved Kurdish problem, Aegean differend with Greece, etc., that MEPs decided to create, for the 1st time on April 1996, a "Monitoring" proces, allegedly destinated to check, without excluding Countries who did not fulfill all CoE's standards.

In the Past, the obliged withdrawal of Greece's Military regime and of its "Civil" cover-up out of the CoE had helped bring back Democracy in 1974. But, on the contrary, since April 1996, the idea was to "monitor" Human Rights' respect while keeping most concerned Countries inside the CoE. After Turkey's oldest example, this was extended also to several former "Eastern" European Countries, even if CoE's Assembly has imposed to some of them (fex. Ukraine, Russia, etc., after Belarus, Serbia, etc) various "Sanctions", that Ankara always avoided. Curiously more succesful even than .. USA itself, (a CoE "Observer" since 1995), which has been at least threatened with sanctions some years ago..

EU-effects of CoE's Monitoring process became obvious between 2001-2008, since the "closure" of this procedure, when CoE felt that a Country had met most of its Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law obligations, (i.e. the "Copenhagen Criteria" for the EU), helped trigger Negotiations with the EU for "Accession" or other closer relations : This occured already before the 2004 and 2007 EU Enlargements to former "Eastern" European Countries, as well as for the commencement of "accession" negotiations with Croatia, and of "open-ended" negotiations with Turkey in 2005.

    But a stricking new development are Holovaty's recent findings that on core Human Rights issues as Torture and Freedom of Expression, Turkey, even "5 Years after" CoE closed its "Monitoring", back in 2004, inciting EU to start accession Negotiations in 2005, still presents grave problems.

    His findings are of crucial importance after a 2008 CoE Resolution called, "if need be", to "seriously consider the possibility of Re-Opening the Monitoring procedure for Turkey" : A move which might affect Ankara's controversial EU bid, since EU Accession Negotiations are based on the Hypothesis that the Candidate fullfils the "Copenhagen Criteria" (See above)..
-------------------------
    Holovaty expressed his will to check  "Matters still Outstanding" and  those that he "didn't have an opportunity to discuss" at an earlier visit this year, "in order to discuss the more complex issues in greater depth", at his forthcoming New Visit to Ankara, before the December 2009 EU Summit.  This is all based on the 2004 CoE Resolution which stresses that, CoE "will continue.. post-monitoring Dialogue with the Turkish authorities,...in addition to a 12-points list,..and on any Other Matter that might arise in connection with Turkey’s Obligations as a CoE member state".

    CoE's Resolution also asks  from Turkey "to secure the proper Implementation of Judgements, particularly in the Cyprus v. Turkey InterState case", of 2001, which concerns also the plight of many Hundreds of MISSING People. It adds Turkey's obligations to "execute" ECHR's Judgements in the Loizidou case,..and in particular adopt General Measures to avoid repetition or continuation of Violations found by the Court" to the detriment of Refugees.

    Nevertheless, Holovaty said to "EuroFora" that "MISSING" persons,"might be included" and cannot be excluded, but he has yet to examine the situation "to find out  which issues will be raised" to the Turkish Government.

    Therefore, "EuroFora" asked Halonen, as the Historic "Mother" of CoE's Monitoring mecanism, if she thought that, "whenever there are grave Human Rights Violations, as fex. "MISSING" persons, attested even by ECHR's judgements, they should be always checked by a Monitoring process. Or could they be forgotten ?"
    
     - "We (CoE) must be, at the same time, Fair, Realistic, but not in the mind that "now we have Forgotten", etc., replied to "EuroFora"'s question Halonen, speaking as a matter of general principle.

    - "When we think of those People that are suffering from the lack of Democracy, of Human Rights, and of the Rule of Law", "we should find a base on how to deal with the (Monitoring) system more rapidly"', she stressed.

    - "Sometimes it's very difficult to combine Transparency and Effectivenes together, particularly in this specific case", she went on to say. But, "I have not found a (CoE Member) Country who could be insensitive in this sens", Halonen answered concerning grave Human Rights violations attested by the ECHR.

    - "I have no ready-made answer. I have the expectations that you, in the CoE, will, step by step, find the different types of the monitoring systems."

    Also "because this is a part of the UN's Post-Conflict system, (fex. when it comes to Cyprus' MISSING persons), and it's a more Global system". So that, "If we make a succes in Europe, the others will follow", throughout the World.  "But they expect that we (Europe) are this opportunity, this Opportunity to make a Succes", Halonen concluded.

    In addition, she advised to extend CoE's Monitoring to all its 47 Member States, "because, as long as we hear that, all these monitoring systems are "OK for the neighbor, but not for me", "it's very difficult" to understand. Something which could make easier to Compare...

    Finnish MEP Jaako Laakso, former CoE Rapporteur on the Occupied Territories of Cyprus and one of the 5 Signatories of the Historic CoE's call to create the "MONITORING" mecanism since 1996, was more specific :  - "We (CoE Assembly) have to find a way for the issue of Cyprus' MISSING People to be better followed", he stressed, anouncing his intention to "speak to Mr. Holovaty" about that. "There might be also other ways", added Laakso.

    - The 2008 "Year had been a very Bad one for Turkey with regard to Human Rights in general, and Freedom of Expression in particular", denounced, meanwhile, Holovaty's preliminary Post-Monitoringh Draft Report by Holovaty, published by the CoE on April 2009.

    "Amnesty International believes that freedom of expression is not guaranteed given the various articles of the Criminal Code that restrict it. .. "For example, 1,300 Websites are said to have been closed down by the (Turkish) authorities in 2008" ! While "the new Turkish Criminal Code was used to bring a total of 1,072 proceedings between June 2005 and April 2008, and led to the conviction of 192 people", for expressing views. "Representatives of the Özgür Gündem newspaper, which specialises in Kurdish affairs, ..complained about Numerous Attacks on their Freedom of Expression ...as was everyone who advocated a settlement to the question by means other than the intervention of the army" "According to their figures, 19 Newspapers had been suspended 43 times between 4 August 2006 and 4 November 2008" !...

    Moreover, on 2008,  CoE's "Ministers adopted its 4rth Resolution on the execution of the judgments of the ECHR, ...and outstanding issues regarding 175 Judgements and decisions relating to Turkey delivered between 1996 and 2008...  concerning Deaths resulting from the excessive use of force by members of the Security forces, the failure to protect the right to life, the DIisappearance and/or death of individuals, Ill-Treatment and the Destruction of property". CoE's " Ministers urged the Turkish authorities ...to ensure that members of Security forces of all ranks can be prosecuted without administrative
authorisation" for "serious crimes". Holovaty reminded.

"Nonetheless", Holovaty heard anew of "Several cases of Violence committed last year (2008) by the (Turkish) security forces". Amnesty International speaks of Many Cases of ill-treatment and Torture in the prisons and by the police". "Including, fex."'the death of Engin Ceber, a young man of 29 who died on October 2008 as a result of the TORTURE allegedly inflicted on him by police officers, prison staff and members of the gendarmerie. He was part of a group of people arrested on September 2008 during a demonstration and Press Conference in Istanbul'. Proceedings against suspects are "on-going" in this case.

- " I therefore noted an Obvious Contradiction between the Government’s stated “zero tolerance” policy.... of Torture and other forms of ill-treatment, and the different testimonies given", denounced CoE's Rapporteur.  Turkish "authorities must make considerable efforts to guarantee that proper investigations are carried out into allegations of abuses by members of the security forces and that perpetrators are effectively punished" "In this respect, I have requested detailed Statistics on the number of Investigations, acquittals and convictions in cases involving allegations of abuse in order to show the positive impact of the measures taken to date", Holovaty said, repeating a permanently unsatisfied CoE's demand to Turkey since a Decade...

    - "The Political Crisis that shook the country in the spring of 2008 highlighted the Weaknesses of the (Turkish) Constitution", which comes from the Military regime of 1982, "and the Urgent Need of Reforms", stressed from the outset CoE's Rapporteur in 2009. In particular, "the ...Democratic functioning of state institutions, including the independence of the judicial system, are crucial", he observes.

    But, "the Electoral  system and the ways in which it is circumvented do not appear to give those elected complete Legitimacy, and tend to pervert the course of direct universal suffrage", denounces Holovaty, observing that, even 5 Years later, Turkey did not yet change the 10% nationwide Threshold for a party to take any seat, which is "far higher" than the "3%" maximum in Europe and already condemned as contrary to European Standards by the CoE.

    + Moreover, EU Parliament's 2009 Report on Turkey, drafted by Dutch MEP Ria Oomen-Ruijten and adopted in Strasbourg on March, expresses "Concern over the Failure of the (Turkish) Judiciary to prosecute cases of Torture and Ill-treatment, the Number of which is Growing". EU also "is concerned about continuing Hostility and Violence against Minorities" in Turkey. It also "calls on the Turkish Government to launch, as a matter of Priority, a Political Initiatve favouring a lasting Settlement of the Kurdish issue, (while "condemning violence.. and terrorist groups"). EU "regrets that No progress has been made on establishing full, systematic Civilian suprevisory functions over the (Turkish) Military".

    The final results of Holovaty's 2nd and last visit to Turkley will be known later this year, and, at any case, before EU's December 2009 Summit.

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