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Home arrow newsitems arrow 1948-2018 Hague Congress=70.Human Rights Professor Benoit-Rohmer on EF: Build Europe with the People

1948-2018 Hague Congress=70.Human Rights Professor Benoit-Rohmer on EF: Build Europe with the People

Автор ACM
Wednesday, 16 May 2018
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*Strasbourg/Institute of Political Science/Angelo Marcopolo/- In an event organized at Strasbourg's University by the European Movement for the Anniversary of Hague's Historic Congress of 1948 on Europe, the top Human Rights Professor Florence Benoit-Rohmer, former Dean of the Faculty of Law, who has teached also at Venice University and created a Paneuropean Network on Human Rights, reacting to an observation made by "Eurofora" during the Debate, Concluded by expressing her basic agreement on the Crucial Point that those who really support the Development of a Strong Europe in the foreseeable Future, should better "Wish to Build Europe Together with the People".

 
european_congress_hague_1948__2018_debate_at_iep_eurofora_400 


- "Eurofora", who had been invited to that special event, organized at the Institute of Political Studies (IEP) by the European Movement, basically observed that the Fact that, still, Nowadays, even the Strategic importance Deepening of €uroArea's Integration, needed, in order to be Succesfull, also to Strengthen considerably the links of the relevant European Institutions with EU Citizens, in order to Stimulate Popular Support, which is of Vital Importance nowadays.


It's mainly in this Direction that can be perceived, f.ex., the recent Calls by new French President Emanuel Macron to ReVitalize the European Democracy, f.ex. by Consulting EU Citizens before Important Strategic Decisions, (Comp.: http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/macronforcitizensdebatesalsoafter2019.html + http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/macronineuparliamentaskscitizensdebates.html + http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/tajaniandmacrontowardseuroforaprojectonapril2018.html ,
http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/macronatthehistoricsourcesofdemocracy.html, etc), to prepare Trans-National Lists for Candidate MEPs in the Future, eventually even to Create a kind of "EuroArea"s New Parliamentary Expression, etc., which have been, more or less, basically supported also by German Chancelor Angie Merkel, while even the Experienced, former Finance or Interior Minister, and Now President of the Bundestag, Wolfgang Schäuble, had clearly stressed, (f.ex. earlier in Strasbourg, at a joint event with ChristianDemocrat/EPP President Joseph Daul : See ...), that a Desirable "EuroArea"s Deepening should go Hand by Hand, Together with a decisive Strenghering of EU Democracy.


Benoit-Rohmer was Speaking together with German Professors in Modern History, Birte Wassenberg (Germany), and  Sylvain Shirmann (France), Experienced former IEP's Director and current Scientific Director of Schuman Foundation, before a Debate with the European Movement's Invitees on the 70th Anniversary of the Congress of Hague (1948-2018), where most pro-European Top Political Personalities had notoriously gathered, (including Churchill, Schuman, Cundenhove-Callergis, etc), making various Key Proposals for the Creation of a Modern Europe, many among which were, Meanwhile, Realized, or are in the process of doing so, (including, f.ex., the establishment of Council of Europe and ECHR, EU Parliament, €uro-Currency, European University and/or "Erasmus" EU Students' mobility, etc).


- Significantly, (particularly in this Preparartory Period for the Forthcoming EU Elections of May 2019),  Professors Wassenberg and Schiermann, together with Prof. Libera, have recently Published an interesting Original Research on: - "Abstentionism, Euro-Scepticism and Anti-Europeanism, at the European Elections between 1979 and 2014", (i.e. covering all of them, until now), edited by Franz Steiner Verlag, at nearby Stuttgart, as the latter confirmed to "Eurofora".


- In Fact, it seems to exist "a Desire for Europe" among many People still Nowdays. EU Parliament is, naturally, very Important, in this regard, but it's also a Fact that "the People were Absent" at that "Hague's Summit of 1948" (where 2 Tendencies were notoriously present : the "Federalists" and the "Unionists", supporting European Integration or Cooperation, respectively), and the way that EU Citizens are Consulted until now is "Not Enough", because the European "People should play a Greater Role" in the Future, stressed Professor Benoit-Rohmer, who resumed Today's Anniversary event in Conclusion, stressed, particulary after the above-mentioned "Eufora"s observation, (Comp. Supra).


=> Thus, Nowadays, "I wish that Europe is Build Together With the People", concluded Human Rights' Professor Florence Benoit-Rhomer in this regard.


 - Earlier, Benoit-Rohmer had also reminded that, while the 1948 Congress of Hague had inspired the Creation of the CoE and of the ECHR, already as early as since 1949, (i.e. just 1 Year later !), which notoriously Developed (particularly after the 2004 CoE Heads of State/Government's Summit in Warsaw (Poland : Comp. "Eurofora" co-Founder's NewsReports from the spot, Published, then, at "TCWeekly", f.ex. : ... + ..., etc), along the main lines shaped by "Human Rights, Democracy and Rule of Law", in fact, more Recently, it's also the EU's Reforms which have also Started to "Protect Human Rights", more and more, f.ex. with the relevant Developments in the European Court of Justice's (ECJ) Case-Law, the Lisbon Treaty's "Charter of Fundamental Rights and Freedoms" (which Entered into Force on 2010), etc., and this Trend is, normally, due to unfold Further in the foreseable Future.


+ Meanwhile, History Professor Sylvain Schirmann (Comp. Supra), expresssed the view that it might be Better, and more Efficient in Practice, to Focus on "Building Concrete Elements which Create real Links" between EU Member Countries, (citting, fex., earlier, the possible Example of a ReinForced Cooperation on European Defense, etc). In Fact, as the Building of Modern Nations often took "several Centuries" before they become really Developed, also "Europe needs a Long Process of Building up", as he said.


I.e., apparently joining EU Commision President, Jean-Claude Juncker's surprizing Conclusion, at his Recent Speech, by a Symbolic Coincidence, ...exactly at this Same Place, i.e. at Strasbourg University's Istitute of Political Sciences (IEP), just a Few Months Ago, that, from the point of view of History,  "contrary to what some think, Europe has just ...Started to be built !" (See: ...). Not far away from what even the 1st EU Parliament's President, former Minister Simone Veil, had already said to "Eurofora", in Reply to a Question raised on the sidelines of her landmark Speech at Sorbonne University, previously in Paris, on 2009, (See : ... + http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/simoneveileuropeintransition.html, etc), i.e. that, in fact, "Europe is in a Transition stage".


- But, at the Same Time, "Human Rigts" and Democracy have "become a Key part of the Foundations of Europe's Identity", observed German History Professor Birte Wassenberg, who also Warned on their Importance, particularly "Now that  EU's Foundations seem to be at a Crisis", as she noted.


-+ Joking, in an attempt to Stir up spirits, if not really believing it, she, However, suggested, with a Bright Smile : - "Sometimes, I Feel that, at least, our "Euro-District" (i.e. Strasbourg City, at the French side of Rhine's internal EU Borders, and Ortenau District, at the German side of that River), "might Become something like USA's .... <<Washingrton D.C.>> at Europe's Core", "leaving for Later-on the task to Bring Together also Paris' and Berlin's National Capitals of France and Germany"...


This, at least, Lighted up some Faces in the Audience : It was, precisely the Moment for a "European DREAM" section, as scheduled in the Program of Today's event... And, after all, why Not ?


(../..)


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***


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


***


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ECHR's President to "EuroFora" on Journalists Gongadze and Adali murders : Principles must apply to all States, without discrimination.


+ ECHR's Statistics on Freedom of Expression (See below).


 European Court of Human Rights' President, Jean-Paul Costa, questioned by "EuroFora" on Journalists' murders, as in Gongadze and Adali's cases etc., strongly stressed all CoE Member States' obligation to make efficient Investigations to find and punish those responsible, and underlined that ECHR's case-law's principles must apply to all without any discrimination.

His call was clearly supported by various Top MEPs who denounced a risk of "Double Standards" if some Journalists' murders are investigated, while others don't.

To avoid such risks, CoE's Parliamentary Assembly adopted a Resolution, on the occasion of Ukranian Journalist Gongadze's murder, "stressing", as a matter of general Principle, "the importance it attaches to the safety of Journalists and political activists, especially those linked to opposition groups, in ALL member states of the CoE". All "crimes against journalists and political activists must be investigated ... as a matter of priority, without political interference".

Costa was replying to "EuroFora"s question on the fact that, after CoE's Committee of Ministers, also CoE's Assembly had just adopted a Resolution on Gongadze murder case, based on an ECHR's judgement of 2005, asking a full Investigation from Ukraine, who has found and condemned  in 10 years of jail 2 executants, but not yet the instigators.

While nothing similar was yet done for dissident Turkish Cypriot Kutlu Adali's murder, with 5 bullets shot at his head out of his Family's home in the territories of Cyprus occupied by Ankara's army, despite another ECHR's judgement of the same year 2005, and despite Turkey's claim that nobody was found among those responsible for the murder, and that there was nothing more to do..

In order to be credible and efficient, CoE's mechanisms shouldn't find a way to at least ask for full investigations of all Journalists' murders anywhere they might be committed, without exceptions ?

adali_gongadze


- "On the larger question that you raised, I'd like to say, since we are in a period of stock-taking on ECHR's 50 Years, that the Court's case-law developed certain concepts ....such as the Positive obligations of States, part of which are also the procedural obligations", started to reply ECHR's President.

 - "Whenever Journalists, Lawyers, Defenders of Human Rights, or even simple Citizens are murdered, the States are held responsible, not only if its their own security forces' agents who committed these murders, but also if they didn't make sufficiently substantial and efficient Investigations", he stressed.

- "I want to strongly underline that we (ECHR) have found in many cases numerous violations of Articles 2 and 3 against States, ....(about) murders or torture, ...because they didn't make enough Investigations in order to try to find and punish those responsible".

- "We (ECHR) do that vis-a-vis all 47 (CoE) Member States, without any discrimination".

"Naturally, the circumstances in each particular case may be differend, and we can't ommit to apply the rules of proof, or the rules of criminal procedure".

"But we try, by all means, to apply these principles of our case-law, to all States", he concluded.

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      Costa's call was strongly supported by several Top CoE MEPs, from various Political areas


- "To investigate the murder of one Journalist, and not of another, looks like Double Standards", denounced the President of EuroLeft Group in CoE's Assembly, Dutch MEP Tiny Cox.  

- "What is the reason ? Politics or specificity of a case ? Of course, if Cyprus and Turkey are involved, it's always a Political case"..

- "Murders of Journalists should always be fully investigated, because killing Journalists is not only killing persons, but also killing Free Press".  "We (CoE's Assembly) should do our outmost to help People who are working on Free Press and they are under threat or murdered".

Because for Free Politics, Free Press is a pre-requisitive : Parliamentarians  cannot  function without a Free Press. Not investigating, is not protecting ourselves".

So we should investigate all Journalists' murders : We are talking about Gongadze, about the Cypriot man (Adali), about the Journalist murdered in Moscow one week ago, etc", Cox concluded

- "CoE can' look at these cases differently. CoE can't wear Blinckers  !".
- "If the one is investigated, so has to be also the other. Why there wasn't full investigation ? Why's that ?", wondered British  Socialist MEP, Alan Meale.

- "A good idea" would be to "make a Motion for Resolution", and "join all Journalists' murders. Adali and Gongadze etc", said to "EuroFora" EU Parliament Political affairs Committee's President, Goran Lindbland, ChristianDemocrat MEP from Sweden.


(See also earlier News at "EuroFora" on similar issues).
-------------------------------

ECHR's Statistics on Freedom of Expression :


    Almost Half of condemnations by ECHR for violations of Freedom of Expression in 2008, concern Turkey : 20 out of a total of 48 for all CoE's Member States.

    Russia, Poland, France and Moldova were condemned only 3 times. Romania, Greece, Portugal, 2 times, and the other CoE Member States only 1 time, or none.
--------------------
    During the last Decade : 1998 - 2008, Turkey was condemned for violating Freedom of Expression in ..169 cases, while Austria only in 24.

    France and Moldova in 14 and 13, respectively, closely followed by Russia and Poland with 11 and 10, respectively. The rest of CoE Member States had less than ten condemnations.    
    

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