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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE Assembly CEO Sawicki to EF: More EU-CoE cooperation on Human Rights + particularly on Turkey ?

CoE Assembly CEO Sawicki to EF: More EU-CoE cooperation on Human Rights + particularly on Turkey ?

Written by ACM
Friday, 07 October 2016

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*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/-
EU - CoE Cooperation on Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law, continues further and intensifies, particularly on Turkey, after the latest EU-27 Summit at Bratislava, even if there are No apparent "Big Changes", replied, in substance, the Experienced CEO of PanEuropean CoE's 47 Member Countries-strong Parliamentary Assembly, Wojcieck Sawicki, from Poland. A Growing Number of various but converging Moves around the Controvesial situation in Turkey after a strange, 6 Hours-long "Putch" Attempt, earlier this Summer 2016 (See, f.ex., "Eurofora"s relevant NewsReport at: ....), due to Start unfolding from Next Week in Strasbourg, during the Autumn Plenary Session of CoE's Assembly (10-14 October 2016), seems to confirm, and further support, such a probable Trend.


- "Eurofora"'s Question to Sawicki, (during the regular Press Briefing of Strasbourg's Journalists following the CoE, at the Eve of its Assembly's Plenary Sessions in Strasbourg), pointed to the Fact that there were various Mentions made at CoE's possible Role, in the above mentioned area, given its Legal Expertise, which were made recently, around the Bratislava EU-27 Heads of State/Government Summit, including, at its eve, in EU Parliament in Strasbourg, (f.ex., by EU Commissioner Hahn since Monday, even the President of EU Commission, JC. Juncker, etc, added also to some Turkish Government Officials themselves, during EU/CoE Visits in Ankara, etc). Given his Long Experience in such matters, did he feel that, indeed, such a pronounced Trend might currently be on its Way ?


- After Reminding the Fact that, EU - CoE Cooperation in such Issues "has been already going-on" since several Years, including, f.ex., in several "Co-Funded Programs", as well as in terms of relevant "Mentions by EU Commission" and others, CoE Assembly's Director General, went on to cite also some other recent Cases of "Hungary, Poland, etc", before Anouncing that the PanEuropean Parliamentary "Assembly has recently referred Turkey to (CoE's Constitutional Law and Human Rights' Watchdog) the <<Venice Commission>> concerning the Laws and other Measures which have been Taken After the <<Putsch>>" of July 2016, (as he said for that Strange, 6 Hours-long, alleged attempt to "restore Peace, Democracy and Human Rights", as those atypical "putschists" had reportedly claimed overnight : See +.....).

Meanwhile, "Venice Commission" is due to Adopt, Next Thursday, its Conclusions on the Suspension of the Turkish Constitution's provisions for "Parliamentary Inviolability" of National MPs. 


- But the overall "Venice Commission"'s forthcoming Findings on Tukey (Comp. Supra) are Expected for "December 2016", Sawicki added, in his above-mentioned Reply to "Eurofora"s Question.

 

Such a Timing Fits quite Well with what mainstream MEP, President of the ChristianDemocrat/EPP Group, and Head of the German Delegation to CoE's Assembly, Axel Fischer, had Previously stressed to "Eurofora", already as Early as since the End of June 2016, (See : ...), about PACE aiming to seriously Check the situation in Turkey and prepare relevant Decisions on that, "from January 2017".

 

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But, meanwhile, given the obvious Urgency of that matter, particularly on several fundamental Human Rights Issues, as well as the Unprecedented Scale of the very Numerous People seriously Affected by a Long Series of Oppressive Measures taken by Ankara's current Government, many MEPs have already Asked, officialy, an "Urgent Debate" on "the Situation in Turkey", due to take place during the forthcoming, Autumn 2016 Plenary Session of CoE's Assembly in Strasbourg Next Week, from 10 to 14 October.


However, at least at this Stage, "there will be No Text" to be Officialy Voted by CoE's Assembly at the Conclusion of such an "Urgent" Debate, Sawicki pointed out.


On the Contrary, CoE's Draft Agenda has scheduled, however, a Full public Debate at this Plenary Session, asking  from ...Russia, inter alia, also to "Withdraw its Troops" from parts of Ukraine, and to Stop "supporting Separatists" in the pro-Autonomy Regions of Lugansk and Luhansk, as it calls them.


But, at the Same Moment, curiously, Nothing has been yet Anounced about Asking also Turkey to "Withdraw" its Military from (CoE and EU Member) Cyprus, Syria and/or Iraq, despite the notoriously Illegal Invasion of Key Territories in all rthose 3 Neighbouring Countries, and several Calls by their respective Governments, who have all Condemned Ankara's various such Invasions, (See, f.ex., also a clear Statement, these Last Days, by Iraq's Prime Minister, etc)...


Moreover, the controversial Ukraine Issues are due to be Debated (and even Voted upon) by CoE's PanEuropean Assembly in the Total Absence of any MEP from Russia, whose National Delegation has been Sanctioned by a makeshift Group of MEPs in the PACE, (Comp., f.ex. : ...), while, on the Contrary, Turkish MEPs will not only be all Present in Strasbourg Next Week, but, in Addition, their Number has been largely Augmented after a Recent Move giving Ankara, for the 1st Time in History, a similar Status as that of the 150 Millions Citizens'-strong Russia, the more than 90 Millions-strong Germany, and UN Security Council "Permanent" Members from the UK and France, so that there are, Now, much More Turkish Votes than in the Past, (something that hadn't been seen before, not even during the Cold War period)...


Nevertheless, CoE in general, seems to be Really Starting to use at least several among its manifold Tools, regarding the currently Massively Aggravated notorious Human Rights "Crisis" inside Turkey. F.ex. :


- CoE's Secretary General, Thornbjorn Jagland, a former Prime Minister from Norway, has just Met, Yesterday in Strasbourg, with the PanEuropean Organisation's recently created "Platform for the Protection of Journalists", (composed mainly by various International Human Rights Organisations specialized on Press/Media Freedom Issues), precisely about the current Oppressive Measures notoriously taken by the Turkish Government against a Large Number of Dissident Journalists, and he "Intends to Strengthen Further" its Role in that matter, as Jagland's Spokesman, and CoE's Press/Media Director, Daniel Holtgen from Germany, stressed Earlier Today to "Eurofora".


  - Today, CoE's Commissioner for Human Rights, Nils Muijnieks, Published in Strasbourg a "Memorandum" on Turkey, where he mainly Concludes that "Deviations from Juman Rights and Rule of Law" Risk to "leave indelible Scars, and be immensely Detrimental in the long run", and, in consequence, "insists on the urgency of reverting to ordinary procedures and safeguards, by ending the state of emergency as soon as possible". Already, "Until then, the (Turkish) authorities should Start Rolling Back the deviations from such procedures and safeguards as Quickly as possible, through a Nuanced, sector-by-sector and case-by-case approach", since certain "Crimes have to be Punished". as he says, considering that  "it is time for the Turkish authorities to Curb certain Excesses of the state of Emergency" at least.  


+ In Addition, CoE's Commissioner Anounced Today his Intention to "Publish" also Other relevant "Memoranda" for Ankara, concerning "namely Human Rights Implications of counter-terrorism Operations in South-Eastern Turkey, and Freedom of Expression and freedom of the Media", "Before the End of 2016", (i.e., once again, according a Timeline which Fits with President Axel Fischer's above-mentioned RDV on Turkey from 1/2017, as he warned "Eurofora" (Comp. Supra).


    - Meanwhile, the PanEuropean Organisation's "Anti-Racism" and "Anti-Discrimination" Watchdog, "ECRI", in comprehensible Report on Turkey, Published Earlier this Week in Strasbourg, Denounces the Fact that, already "Before the Coup" of July 2016, "since the renewed Security Operations in 2015, the Situation of the Kurdish Minority has "Sharply Deteriorated", while, at the Same Time, "Hate Speech, including by senior State representatives, is on the Rise in Turkey, and most of it goes Unpunished", expressing also "Concern" for Roma, LBGTI People and Refugees, as, inter alia, despite Staying in Turkey for Years, "at least 400,000 Refugee Children do Not have Access to School", and Most Refugees No "Work Permits", (etc).


    + Next Week in Strasbourg, on the Sidelines of CoE Assembly's Plenary Session for Autumn 2016, in Addition to a Press Conference on "Press and Media Freedom in Turkey", organized on Tuesday by the "EuroLeft" Group of MEPs, the Experienced former President of PACE, mainstream Liberal MEP from Luxembourg, Anne Brasseur, organises a Hearing on "the situation of the Turkish Justice system", both "Before and After the Coup", with the participation of the Leaders of 3 or 4 European Associations of Judges and other Experts, ONG, etc., 2 Days Before PACE's forthcoming, general Public Debate on "the situation in Turkey, in the light of the Attempted Coup d'Etat", in general, initialy Scheduled for Thursday, (i.e. when German Foreign Minister, Steinmeier, is due to Visit and Address the CoE here).


    - Last, but not least,  Turkey's Foreign Minister, the Experienced Mevlut Cavusoglou, former PACE Chairman, is expected to also Visit and Address the PanEuropean CoE's Parliamentary Assembly on Wednesday, when he's normaly due to Reply to various MEPs' Questions during 40 Minutes, as usualy Scheduled in such kind of Official visits. (Something which is Not always seen with Pleasure by Ankara's Government Officials : F.ex., former Prime Minister Davutoglou had notoriously chosen, at a Previous occasion here, to Occupy all the allocated Time with his own Speech, Leaving for MEPs' Questions Only a Few Minutes... This was very Critically commented by various CoE Senior Officials afterwards, as well informed CoE sources Warned Today)... 

 

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   All such Various but Converging Moves by several CoE's Mechanisms, almost at the Same Time, (as usual in cases so serious as that of Turkey), are naturaly Welcome, and even Long Overdue, as far as Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law are concerned. But the current Lack, at least until now (i.e. Before the 1/2017 alleged "RDV" : Comp. Supra), of an Overall and Comprehensive Assessment, to Debate in Public, in order to Result in certain Important Decisions by Vote, etc, as well as the Fact that Turkey, recently, was given a Higher Status inside CoE's Assembly (mainly, with More MEPs => Votes+) than even before in History (Comp. Supra), risking to look, at least apparently, as playing a Double Role of "Both Judge and Party" (as certain Top Turkey Officials appeared Recently very Glad to observe), may obviously provoke legitimate concerns, or, at least, raise unanswered yet, critical Questions.


A Next CoE Assembly's Session is due to take place, in the Format of its Standing Comittee (the Highest Body just after the full Plenary) on November 2016 in Cyprus, which takes over CoE's rotating Presidency from November 2016 to May 2017, almost 23 Years after its Previous such Presidency, Back on 1994, (to whom "Eurofora"s co-Founder had actively Contributed then, also, intitially, from a Press Attaché side, i.e. Helping Journalists and Informing Cyprus' Government on several Topical EU/COE/UN Issues from Strasbourg. The New Speaker of Cyprus' Parliament, Dimitri Sylouris, (a long-time MP, and even former MEP at EU Parliament here, quite well known to "Eurofora"), has recently anounced, (during the Latest BiAnnual Summit of CoE's Speakers of Parliament, back on September 15-16 in Strasbourg : an Important Meeting, that "Eurofora" was practicaly Obliged to Miss, since we had to Urgently Catch a Train for the 1st in History EU-27 Heads of State/Government, Post-BREXIT Summit, at Bratislava, Slovakia : Comp. our 5 NewsReports from Bratislava at : .... + ... + ... + ... + ...) that the precise Date of that Event had been scheduled for 24 - 25 November 2016.

(../..)

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3 EU Parliament votes to boost EuroGroup !

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After EuroZone Paris Summit's succes, Sarkozy calls to "think anew how to re-construct Europe !

"EuroZone and EU Institutional debates pave the way to 2009 discussions on EU Future, including Enlargment, Turkey etc. ?


23 October 2008

After EU Parliament strongly suppported in 3 successive Votes this week in Strasbourg French EU Chairmanship's move to boost Euro-Group at EU's core, while ideas on EU Institutional problems are awaited on December, "it's an open Question now" if this may lead to a debate on EU's Future, or not, told us French President, Nicolas Sarkozy''s Spokesman, Pierre-Jerome Henin.

MEPs voted on Thursday fresh Funds to support EuroGroup, after adopting on Wednesday a Resolution asking a "further Evolution" to "the 1st ever meeting of Heads of State and of Government of the Euro-Zone, taking decisions in that capacity", while earlier this week a Report asked "a stronger Institutional setting" for "EuroGroup", extended from "competitiveness/industry" to "environment, employment and education", with "increased powers for Political decision-making", according to a text drafted by French MEP Francoise Beres and German MEP Werner Langen, "10 Years after the creation of Euro" (1999 - 2009).

- Brussels' subsequent "EU Council ..(simply)..ratified the measures decided by EuroGroup on October 12" in Paris, which "were necessary to contain the current Financial Crisis", Resolution observes, expressing also support to the new process succesfully initiated by Sarkozy and due to be completed by agreements with USA and other countries at a Global level.

From now on, it's between two differend but parallel moves : EU's delay, and EuroZone's acceleration, that Enlargement and particularly Turkey's controversial EU bid, will have to search its way :

Indeed, EU's 27 expect a "Roadmap on how to deal with the Irish problem" on Lisbon Treaty ratification after December, risking to pass even 2009 Elections and next Commission with the old Nice Treaty of 2000, out-dated and unfit even for 2004's Enlargement...

On the contrary, EU's core launches a real "Economic Governance for EuroZone at the highest level of Heads of State/Government" of the 15, which started in Paris on October 12 and was strongly supported this week in Strasbourg by Sarkozy and EU Parliament.
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- "It's a good idea, to launch such a debate ("on EU's Future") in EU Parliament in view of 2009 Euro-Election : Perhaps some MEPs will seize an opportunity", told us mainstream French MEP Alain Lamassoure, former EU Minister and EU Spokesman for France's governing party UMP.

- "All MEPs' debates on such EU Councils are also part of the larger debate on Europe's future : Now with EuroZone, and even more when, on December, Irish Prime Minister is due to table proposals in Strasbourg on how to deal with EU Treaty's ratification", replied earlier to our question EU Parliament's Press Director and Spokesman, Jaume Duch.
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Sarkozy has formally anounced his intention to open EU Debates on Economy, Identity/Enlargement (i.e. mainly Turkey), etc. both linked to a popular Political view of Europe, since his Historic speeches on EU in Strasbourg, on February and July 2007, when he stressed that "Europe needs a New Renaissance". At the beginning of the French EU Presidency, on July 2008, replying to a MEP, he suggested that EU Parliament takes an active part in Debates on EU's Future.

- Now, in 2008, "Crisis are an opportunity to re-think how to re-construct Europe", Sarkozy stressed. At any case, the Historic 1st EuroZone Summit of Heads of State/Government, which started replying to the Financial crisis,"is a Turning Point : After that, Europe cannot be governed as before, but differently" : People "like a Europe with Strong Will".

- "We must make the System move !", "Europe needs Innovation" and free political debates. EU "Elections are in a few Months", Sarkozy warned.

He invited EU Parliament to fully play its role as "the Democratic Heart of the Europe we want : United, Independent and Voluntarist, because the World needs Europe's voice".

- "It's no more possible for Euro-Zone to continue without an Economic Government" at the Highest Level of Heads of State/Government, who provide "Democratic Legitimity" and can take important decisions, he announced, strongly supported by EU Parliament's Economic Committee which just voted to boost the "Institutional" aspects of "EuroGroup".

Plasticity offered by the current absence of a special Treaty on EuroZone's Institutions "made it easy to adapt the organization of the 1st Summit with imagination, to efficiently meet urgent needs", he observed, on the occasion of Brittish Prime Minister's exceptionnal presence at the greatest part of EuroGroup's Paris Summit.

- "In EuroZone we have the same Bank, the same Money, and, thus, a same duty for Unity" : "By bringing together EuroGroup's 15 members States we suceeded to find a solution and prepare a Giant Plan of 1.800 Billion euros", Sarkozy reminded of Paris' 1st Historic EuroZone's Summit.

Afterwards, Brussels' EU Council followed the move, and USA's Paulson II Plan was inspired from that. "Europe must promote the idea of Global Economy's Refoundation", he stressed.

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- "I was frankly astonished when I found, at the EU, a rigid system, where any New Idea was seen from the outset as a sacrilege, while, on the contrary, Europe needs Innovation !", he described.

F.ex. ,"'When we first spoke about the "Union for the Mediterranean", it was misunderstood as something extraordinary.. When later we had the Russia -Georgia crisis, it seemed against EU's custom to act "in the middle of August", instead of staying a passive spectator ! And when, in front of the Financial ciris, we gathered the 1st EuroZone Summit of the "15", some thought of it as a lese-majesté", he denounced.
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On Geo-Political Principles :
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- But, by moving resolutely, "EU obtained the ...withdrawal of Occupation Troops in 2 Months !", reminded Sarkozy, observing that Russia "fulfilled its commitments", in the Georgian crisis, where a "disroportionate reaction" from Moscow followed a "totally inappropriate action" from Tbilisi's troops. "It would be crazy to reply by military means : EU should not become accomplice of another Cold War, imposed by lack of cool heads".. as he said.

In future, "the creation of a common European Economic Area with EU and Russia, would also obtain a raprochment on our Human Rights and Democratic Values", added Sarkozy, in a statement which should logically be applied, a fortiori, to controversial EU "candidate" Turkey..

Particularly when, the same week that EU Parliament voted 2009 EU Funds for Turkey's controversial EU bid, ECHR took a series of judgements condemning Turkey for grave Violations of Human Rights, such as : Torture, death of a political prisoner in unclear circumstances followed by failure to conduct a proper Investigation, "enforced Disappearance" of a youngster aged 17, Killing of a sepherd with Tank Shells, persecuting Journalists for articles on "Missing" People, even a former President of Human Rights' Association, (etc)

- "We (EU) can defend our ideas on respect of Sovereignity and territorial Integrity, on Human Rights and other differences ... without confrontation", Sarkozy stressed, on the occasion of Russian/Georgian conflict, reminding that : "we were only 2 steps from catastroph", when a Peace agreement brokered in Moscow prevented, at the last minute, Russian troops' advance towards Tbilisi.

An EU Parliament Resolution adopted Wednesday in Strasbourg on the occasion of Russia - Georgia conflict, outlines a set of Principle which apply elsewhere too, (particularly when EU Rapporteur for Russia and Turkey is one and same person ; Dutch MEP Ria Oomen-Ruijtanen !)

Clearly rejecting any "military solution to the conflicts", MEPs "condemn ..all those who resorted to force and violence". They denounce a "disproportionate military action", "as well as (an) unilateral decision to recognise the independence" of brekaway regions, "calling.. to respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity" of the concerned country, "and the inviolability of its borders recognised by all EU Member States". They warn that "EU must review its policy towards" a 3rd Country, "should .(it)...not comply with its commitments", and "stress that the withdrawal of.... troops from the areas ....is an essential additional step".

EU Parliament "calls for the safe and quick return of refugees, (accepted by Russian President Medvedev) accompanied by the deployment of EU observers on the ground", and "regrets ...that ..EU Monitoring Mission (EUMM) is not allowed to enter the ...breakaway regions". Moreover, "It's important to ensure that persons and NGOs ..engaged in defending human and civil rights can operate". "Until ...all remaining issues (are) resolved..., and notably the continuing ...Military presence", "relations with the EU ..cannot be fully normalised", MEPS warned.

As nobody likes to be accused to practice "Double Standards", this should be regarded as "Principles" applicable to any Third Country at EU's Neighborhood.. No ?

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On Economy :

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- "When Financial crisis shook US and EU's Banks, without result from the 1st (American) Paulsen plan, it was the common reply of the 1st EuroZone's Summit, involving some 1800 Billion euros, which started a positive move in the markets, soon strengthened by the follow-up of the US Paulson 2 Plan, noted Sarkozy.

- "Europe should not be only on the defensive, but, if necessary, know also how to take an offensive", he said, brushing away hesitationsto act on Economy: - "I'm for a refondation of Capitaliism, but against Speculators, who betray its values" : "Lack of Rules was profitable to speculators, Not to businessmen !" We must make sure to prevent any such crisis in future". "We, the rest of the World, cannot continue to bear the deficits of the 1st World power without saying anything !", the French President said, applauded by EU Parliament. All this needs "a New Global Governance", on which EU Parliament must debate. That's why "we proposed together with USA, several Summits from mid-November", to which G-8, enlarged to China, India a.o. countries, should participate. UNO's SG; Ban Ki Moon, the IMF, etc.

Financial crisis lowered shares' prices even for healthy companies, sometimes to 1/3 of their initial price, so that strangers might buy EU industries for only a portion of their real value, and Europeans may wake up one day with their main industries sold out to foreigners !

That's one of the reasons for which EU should debate about creating "Golden Shares" for States to jointly take Strategic participations to help European Industries until the end of the Crisis, particularly against distording competition, he suggested, pointing at USA's 35 billion $ plan for American Car Industry."We shall struggle for Europe to be able to build Airplanes, Ships, Trains, Cars, because we need a strong Industry", he concluded.

"F.ex. as we did back in 2004, when as Finance Minister, we bought Alsthom's shares for 800.000 euros, and, after restructuring, we sold them for 2 Millions : Help a company and make money is not so bad"...

As for the UK, "when Ireland announced that it would guarantee only Irish Banks, London City emptied from liquidities in 24 hours : It's the EU which helped to restore the situation, Not the UK alone !", reminded Sarkozy to nationalist British MEP Nigel Farage.

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On the contrary, in a last-minute attempt for the EU to catch-up with its Institutional delay "before the European Elections" of June 2009, MEPs simply voted a call for a "set of proposals" to be made for the "Irish public opinion" at the end of the year...

- "As long as Lisbon Treaty is not ratified by all 27 EU Member States, there is an unanimous decision to stop Enlargement, reminded Wednesday in Strasbourg the French Minister for EU affairs, Jean-Pierre Jouyet..

Added to an indirect but clear warning that, without Lisbon Treaty, all 27 EU Member Countries may not have a Commissioner in the 2009 resuffle, MEPS in the Constitutional/Foreign affairs Committees applauded hoping that this might motivate their Irish friends..

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