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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE Media + Internet - Information Society Heads Grundmann +Gylfadottir to EF on Journalists +Terror

CoE Media + Internet - Information Society Heads Grundmann +Gylfadottir to EF on Journalists +Terror

Written by ACM
Monday, 19 June 2017

*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- Just after Leading Topical PanEuropean Debates particularly on Digital Media Internet Actors' Rights and Responsibilities, as well as Regulation or Self-Regulation issues, concerningon Medias' role when facing Terrorism, CoE's Media and Internet Director, Silvia Grundmann from Germany, as well as the President of CoE's, 47 Member States-strong, Committee on Media and Information Society, Elfa Gylfadottir, from Iceland, speaking to "Eurofora", Highlighted some of the Key Principles to observe during nowadays Fast-Developing relevant Events :




- First of all, "Press' Freedom was, and still is, always Under Attack !", stressed from the outset Grundmann, with a smile...

Inter alia, she was pointing, obviously, also to CoE's latest relevant Publication : an Official TextBook, prefaced by the PanEuropean Organisation for Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law's Secretary General, Thornbjorn Jagland, (former Prime Minister of Norway, and Nobel Peace Prize Committee Head), which Warned about recent Findings Alerting on Journalists' growing "Self-Censorship"...

The main Cause was, according to that, most Recent CoE's Book, published just on March 2017, in Strasbourg, an evolving, multifacet "Pressure" on "Journalists", who, according to CoE's most recent "Definition", (updated by a select Committee of competent and experienced Experts, including also the new Secretary General of the "European Federation of Journalists" - "EFJ", HeadQuartered in Brussels,
Ricardo Gutierrez: Comp. Interview to "Eurofora" at: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/iachrcoebookandefjsgonjournalismdefinition.html), are "Persons who are Regularly Engaged in the Collection and Disseminaion of Informations, destinated to the Public, for "Journalistic" (i.e. Public Service) purpose".

 A Definition, already Faithfull to ECHR's well-established Case-Law on the only relevant Article on Human Rights: Number 10, as well as on a CoE's Highest Political body : that of its Committee of Ministers, Legal Recommendation, taken already as early as since 2000, as the 2017 CoE Book's Authors remind Nowadays. But, also well corresponding to a Pioneer Decision, explicitly taken by the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, since...more than 32 Years: from November 1985 ! (See: ....).

- However, CoE's Media and Internet Director, Today expessed her Optimist and Voluntarist Belief, in Reply to an "Eurofora" Question, that "a Right Balance", between Press Freedom (indispensable for any Democratic Society), and Security, in Nowadays' Context, could and should prevail:

- In this regard, it's Interesting to See, f.ex., what will exactly happen with a forthcoming Draft Law, due to be Debated and Adopted "during this Summer" 2017, by Germany's Bundestag, she observed, (while it's also well known that new President Macron's French Government, also currently prepares a relevant Legislation, almost at the Same Time).



+ Meanwile, however, what has the Highest Ambition to become, perhaps, the World's Best Legal Status for On-Line Publishers, particularly from the point of view of Freedom of Expression, sensitive Data Protection, Defense against Cyber-Crime and/or abuse, is Still Developing in Iceland, as native Elfa Gylfadottir, President of CoE's PanEuropean Committee on Media and Information Society,  told "Eurofora" :

- Gylfadottir, (who has also served as the competent Head of Iceland's relevant "Steering" Commission for years), explained to "Eurofora", that, in fact, it's not only 1 or 2, but, on the contrary, a lot of Many and Various, related Legal Changes, Modifications, Adaptments, etc, which have to be considered and adequately decided, from several points of view, before good Final Decisions.

- Expected "possibly during Next Year" (2018), such Legal Modifications, on that Highly Topical, but also Sensitive issue, inevitably have also various Political impacts, and, at least partly depend from the overall Governmental policies.

At any case, one thing goes for sure :

- We want to Help f.ex. Human Rights' NGOs, "Whistle-Blowers", Investigative Journalists, really Independent Medias keeping a Critical Eye on Power, etc, but Not at all ...Porn Editors, shady Commercials, Tax-Evading outlets, or Terrorist cover-ups, etc., she pointed out.

=> For such purposes, we all need some Good and Crystal-clear Justifications and Definitions, CoE's Experienced, "Media and Information Society" PanEuropean Committee's Head, told "Eurofora", (Comp. f.ex.Supra).




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

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    EU Rapporteur on Enlargment Strategy, maistream German MEP Elmar Brok, speaking to "EuroFora", welcomed the proposal made earlier this week by French President Nicolas Sarkozy for the EU to"start Now Talks with Turkey to create a common Economic and Security area", instead of full Accession, at a period when Ankara looks more and more unfit and/or unwilling to respect EU conditions.

    - "For Europe to have strong Political will, it must stop dilutiing itself in an endless Enlargement. It must have borders...Diversities enrich, on the condition that they don't undermine European Cohesion, and don't weaken EU Unity", Sarkozy stressed.
    - "Countries like Turkey share a part of common destiny with Europe, with which they have a vocation to build a Privileged Relation, to be closely associated, but not to become Member of the EU"  : "Noone respects his friends by telling them lies. Noone respects his friends by making them promises that will be never kept", he added.

    That's why "we'd better start, from now, negotiating with Turkey to create a common Economic and Security area", Sarkozy proposed.

Significantly, the French President was repeatedly and largely applauded by EU citizens, 3 times, when he made the Turkey point, (strategically placed between Europe's "Political Will" and its cultural heritage, historically open to mutually enriching dialogue with all the World, but never diluted).

    - "We could propose such a great ambition also to Russia, which must not be percieved as an Adversary of Europe, but as a Partner. Thus, we'd create a wide area, of more than 800 Million inhabitants, sharing the same Security, the same Prosperity", he concluded.


    Sarkozy's move was anounced at the eve of a Franco-German Top meeting with Chancellor Angie Merkel in Berlin on Sunday, to jointly launch the EU Elections campain, after an EU Summit at nearby Prague, to launch a new kind of relations, called "Eastern Partnership", with neighboring countries such as Urkaine, Belarus, Moldova, Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaidjan, etc, (to which Russia, reportedly, is not - and does not want to be - included).

    As for Ukraine, which has already expressed her wish to join the EU in future, "Kiev will have a special place, and a very important role to play", replied earlier this week in Strasbourg, to an "EuroFora" question EU Chairman in office , Czech vice-Prime Minister Alexander Vodra.

    - "This direction is more Realistic for Turkey than Accession negotiations", reacted immediately EU Parliament's Rapporteur for Enlargment Strategy, mainstream German MEP Elmar Brok, commenting Sarkozy's idea for "EuroFora"

     Particularly "as far as it concerns the respect of EU Rules by both sides", he added, hinting at Turkey's now obvious inability and/or unwillingness to abide with EU Acquis, EU Commitments (fex. on Cyprus, etc), and European Democracy/Human Rights rules. (Comp. infra).

    Brok added that, in his view, a similar proposal might be made also to Ukraine and other neighbouring Countries, regardless if they have, or not, a "European vocation". This would not necessarily mean that there couldn't be any accession prospects at all." for all the countries that might be included in this area, according to Brok.  But it's preferable, particularly for Turkey, "because it's a more Realistic approach than full Membership".

    On this point, Sarkozy's proposal, (which he'll share with German Chancellor Merkel), seems more crystal-clear.


    - "Turkey does not fullfil EU Criteria, and will never fullfil EU Criteria" on Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law. "Some have been lying to Ankara, but we must tell the Truth, and have honest and close relations with her", said meanwhile to "EuroFora" on the same issue also the President of EU Parliament's largest Group of MEPs (ChristianDemocrats/EPP), Joseph Daul.
"Hot" Debate at EU Parliament reveals CHANGE of mood towards "Suspension" of EU - Tukey talks.
    Earlier this week, many MEPs, and even some of those who were previously in favor of Turkey's controversial EU bid, strongly criticized the persistance and even aggravation of serious Human Rights violations in the country, that ECHR continues to "unanimously" condemn ":

      - "After winning a big victory in the latest Local Elections, the pro-Kurdish party DTP almost doubled its Elected Mayors from 52 to 98", but afterwards "more than 400 politicians were thrown to Prison and prosecuted" by the Turkish Authorities, denounced on behalf of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group, Belgian MEP Frieda Brepoels.

     At the same time, "more than 1.500 Children are closed in Turkish Prisons", she added. "What will the EU Commission do" against these facts ?

- "Turkey appears to be at greater Distance away from Copenhagen Criteria after 4 Years of accession Negotiations, than when they started !", denounced on behalf of the Liberal Group, German MEP Alexander Lambsdorf.    

"On the central issue of Press Freedom, Critical Journalists face obstacles for their accreditation, others are prosecuted, condemned, fined and/or jailed, Media blocked or closed", he denounced.   

 - "EU Made 2 grave Mistakes with Turkey : To start accession negotiations, and to continue them", despite everything, criticized Dutch MEP Bastian Belder, on behalf of the Ind/Dem group.



2009 EU Elections were won by Parties against Technocracy and Turkey's controversial EU bid, while the 1999-2004 Majority Abstention trend decelerated. What should be done in 2009-2014 ?


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