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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE Director+Ministers' Chair to EF for a Common Legal Space on Mediterranean States:Areas+Exchanges

CoE Director+Ministers' Chair to EF for a Common Legal Space on Mediterranean States:Areas+Exchanges

Written by ACM
Tuesday, 18 September 2018

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*Strasbourg/CoE/Angelo Marcopolo/- Both the EU and CoE's PanEuropean Organisation marked a joint wish to deal with South Mediterranean Countries by sending 2 Political Heavy-Weights in Today's Conference at Strasbourg for the Launch of a 3rd Phase, for the Period of 2018-2020, of their Programme for sustainable Democratic Governance and Human Rights in Southern Mediterranean, (known as "South III". For the Previous Phase II, See "Eurofora"s NewsReport http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/eucoesouthmediterraneanprogram2.html) :

 

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- Experienced CoE's deputy Secretary General, Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni from Italy, (as CoE's SG Thornbjorn Jagland was Visiting Greece, another Mediterranean Country, which prepares to soon Host on October 2018 a "North/South Center" event, destinated to an even Larger Circle of 3rd Countries Neighbouring Europe), Focused, from the outset, on the Strategic Aim to Help "Build a Common Legal Space".


- Well known former EU Commissioner, f. vice-Prime Minister and Foreign Minister of Bulgaria (recently EU Chair for the 1st Half of 2018), Meglena Kuneva, revealed that this was her "1st Event" in her New role as EU (28 Member States' strong) Ambassador to the PanEuropean CoE (47 Member States strong, including Russia, etc), Confirmed EU's Will to "Continue" to "Support", in a "Sustainable" way, such "Cooperations" as a (Regional) "Bridge" towards a Better "Global Governance".


EU provides up to 90% of the Funding, (the rest 10% comming from the CoE), while CoE "Welcomes" the interested Southern Mediterranean Coutries to its extensive and manifold set of "Legal Conventions" in various fields, where, as CoE's Director for Information Society and Action against Crime, Jan Kleijssen from Austria (current EU Chair for the Period of July - December 2018) noted, in Addition to about 12 CoE's Legal Conventions already Signed by such Countries, anOther 12 Conventions are Open and Ready for Signature in the foreseable Future.

 

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It's a Fact that even CoE's and EU's Historic Enlargment towards Central-Eastern European Countries, (including Russia for the CoE, towards the End of the 20th Century, Followed by an Extension of the EU to 28 Member States from the Beginning of the 21st Century), had been notoriously Prepared through a Previous Signature, Ratification and Participation of those Countries to CoE's "Cultural" Convention, initially.


Such Moves allow to "Anchor" Better Relations/Cooperation, Now Heading mainly towards a more "Multilateral Cooperation", stressed Battaini-Dragoni, while also Inviting Representatives of Southern Meiterranean Countries to Express their own "Views for Future Cooperation", Ensuring them of an Open "Dialogue".

 

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(ECHR in Arab Language)


Thus, among others, f.ex., even if some really wished, inside CoE, to promote this time particularly a CoE's Convention known as "Istanbul" Treaty, against Violence on Women and inside Homes, (Hotly Supported by Out-Going former Turkish MEP Gülsün Bilgehan), nevertheless, other Participants observed also that more than 17 CoE's Member States have Not yet Ratified that particular Text, in Addition to the Fact that "Noone among the 3rd, Non-European Countries, hasn't even SIgned that".


Summing-up, in Conclusion, the Number 1 CoE's Senior Official in charge of these matters too, Verena Taylor, the PanEuropean Organisation's Director General of Programmes, pointed at a Will of "Flexibility" during "Sud III" (i.e. between 2018-2020), aiming mainly to "Reply to Calls" from the Willing Countries, preferably in a "Regional" Context.

 
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+ And, Speaking afterwards with "Eurofora", Verena Taylor Confirmed, as CoE's Programmes' competent Director, that, eve if there is, currently as wish to propose that Istanbul Convention, nevertheless, Strasbourg's PanEuropean Organisation would be Ready to Use Also a Great Variety of Manifold Other Key Legal Conventions, open to 3rd Countries, during the Period to come, (Comp. Supra). She didn't go as far as to explicitly suggest that they might also be "Tailor-made", but her Smile have an Impression that it might not be so far away from such an eventually "Flexible" approach, (Comp. Supra).


++ Furthermore, this Key point of overall Strategy was also Supported, and even Concretely ReInforced, with several Particular Mentions of Various Real Examples, by the President of CoE's Ministers' "EX" Group, in charge of External Relations, Ambassador Katrin Kivi, from Estonia, speaking, later-on, with "Eurofora" :

 

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- Among others, f.ex., it's also on Helping to Fight against "Cyber-Crime", on Protecting "Personal Data", (where CoE intends to Launch a ReNovated Legal Convention, in Agreement with the EU, during its Parliamentary Assembly's Plenary Session of October 2018 in Strasbourg), as well as in Preventing "Radicalisation", Fighting against Terrorism, but also Elections, Constitutions, Anti-Corruption Measures, Reform of the Judiciary, etc, Added also Ambassador Kivi to "Eurofora", in a purely Indicative, but suggesting way.

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* Concerning the Prestigious "Venice Commission", CoE's Top Legal Experts' body for Democracy and Human Rights through mainly Constitutional Law, its Experienced Director, Thomas Markert from Germany, speaking to "Eurofora", observed, f.ex., the Interesting Fact that, particularly with Tunisia, Morocco and Jordany, but also Other South Mediterranean Countries, CoE has Efficiently Cooperated, inter alia, also in the Creation of several "Independent Authorities" in various Key Sectors, probably because, inter alia, they did not wish for an Instable Parliament to eventually Dominate all Social Life in their Countries, but Preferred to have a More Resilient Civil Society build around Stable Values and elementary Democratic Pluralism, Markert practically highlighted.

 

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Moreover, a Young Morocco Expert on Audio-Visual affairs, Amine Elbouazzaoui Haca, told "Eurofora" that Rabat was already Participating inside Strasbourg-based CoE's PanEuropean Audio-Visual Observatory, (a "Hit" nowadays particularly for V.O.D. in its Annual Press Conference at Cannes' International Festival). Indeed, how could it be Otherwise for the Country of World-Famous "Casablanca" Hollywood Film, starring the Historic legends of Humphrey Bogart with Lawren Bacall ?...


But Verena Taylor's "Dialogue" (Comp. Supra) went sometimes "Spicy", particularly when a Tunisian Expert Imed Hazgui, President of the (Independent) Authority for Access to Information, launched a Friendly Challenge to the Experienced President of CoE's "Venice Commission" (Comp. Supra), Gianni Buquicchio, by Claiming that the Tunisian Constitution of 2014 and subsequent Legislation would have Developed "Better Legal Standards" Citizens' "Access to Information" and/or "Participation" to Public Authorities Decisions-Making !


Surprizingly, President Buquicchio did Not Deny that, and, on the Contrary, spoke, as a matter of General Principle, in favor of "Sharing" the Best Legal Standards accross North and South Mediterranean Countries...

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"Eurofora" subsequently Spoke with President Hazgui on that Key Point for Citizens nowadays, and we reminded him, inter alia, also the Fact that, when that New Tunisian Constitution of 2014 was still being Prepared on 2012, We had raised a relevant Question, in a Press Conference at the CoE in Strasbourg, to the Head of Tunisia's Constituent Assembly, Ben Jafaar, precisely about eventual Innovations concerning Citizens' Participation to the Decision-Making process by Pubic Authorities, and Jafaar had, indeed, Replied Carefuly but Positively, at least in principle, without Excluding that "the Genius of the (Tunisian) Revolution might", perhaps, succeed to Deal also with that, (See : http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/tunisianrevolutionideasondemocracy.html).


Indeed, the Article of the 2014 Tunisian Constition which enshrines a Citizens' Right to Acces to Information, Transparency, etc, makes it clear that this aims to Help Develop Citizens' Participation to the Decision-making process, more Widely observed President Hazgui, among others, replying to "Eurofora" on that point. [NDLR : The Rest is a Legal Analysis' Comparison Study].  


- "Knowledge Transfert" between the Northern and Southern Mediterranean Countries "is Not Uni-Directional", indeed, pointed, in this and various other similar regards, the Head and an Expert of EU Commission's DG NEAR, Ingrid Schwaiger and Anne Tuna, (both from Austria, the current EU President for 7-12/2018), as a matter of General Principle.


Amin Haca (Comp. Supra) told "Eurofora" that a Web Network of various Legal "Regulations" accross the Mediterranean Sea Countries contains, in principle, various such Legal Standards used at the North and/or South, (as one of the remnants, probably, of the 2008 Attempt to create a "Mediterranean Union", on the occasion of the French Presidency of the EU, then : Comp. relevant "Eurofora"s NewsReports from the relevant Heads of State/Summit, then, in Paris' "Grand Palais", f.ex., at: .., etc).  

 
Concerning Today's EU/CoE Programme of "SUD III" for 2018-2020, such a GeoPolitical Area is due to Bring Together around Nine (9) Entities from the "Southern" side, such as : Morocco, Algeria, Tunisia, Lybia, Egypt, Israel, Palestinian Authority, Lebanon and Jordan, said earlier to "Eurofora" CoE's Head of Programming Department, Pilar Morales Fernandez-Shaw.


In this Wider Framework, it's, f.ex., also the Interesting Experience and "Know-How" of Morocco in the Figght against Radicalisation, which could be Usefull for most Other Participants, she pointed out. And the Interests but also the Ingenuity of various Southern Mediterranean Countries, as well as the "Flexibility" of EU/CoE's "SUD" Programs have f.ex. Created even a "Cyber-SUD" specifique Project, etc., Pilar Morales -Shaw told "Eurofora". 

Meanwhile, inter alia, it was announced that the Foreign Minister of Tunisia will visit CoE's Assembly in Strasbourg at the beginning of October 2018. 

This coincides with the Opening for Signature of CoE's new, Revised Convention for the Protection of Personal Data, (Agreed with the EU), mainly throughout Digital Technologies, (Comp. Supra).

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

(../..)


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    Before the end of 2009, France and Germany will take strong initiatives to open "new Horizons" needed by Europe and the World, going well beyond the current Crisis' management, anounced French President Nicolas Sarkozy and German Chancellor Angie Merkel, reassuring that both a judgement on Lisbon Treaty by nearby Karlsruhe German Federal Court, and the forthcoming National Elections in Germany would confirm their capacity to act.    

They were replying to Press questions in Berlin, after key-regional elections on Sunday, where Merkel's ChristianDemocratic party kept everywhere a strong 1st and won the possibility to forge a New Majority with Liberals at the largest of 3 Landers : Saxony (4 millions inhabitants), while its main competitor, the Socialdemocrat party fell to unprecedented lows : Tackled by the small "Linke" (left) party in Saarland (1 million inhabitants), it became even smaller than it in Saxony and Thuringen (3 million inhabitants), where SPD arrived only third. While its usual partners, the "Greens" also fell down, contrary to CDU's new partners, the FDP Liberals, who go up.

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    - "It's important for EU's credibility that France and Germany advance forward together", stressed Merkel from the outset. "Don't worry about Germany's capacity to undertake initiatives" with France, she added. "France and Germany will be perfectly able to make proposals" for the EU.

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