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Home arrow newsitems arrow International Human Rights Institute Head, f. ECHR President, Costa to EF on PostHumanism +Surrogacy

International Human Rights Institute Head, f. ECHR President, Costa to EF on PostHumanism +Surrogacy

Written by ACM
Tuesday, 20 September 2016
 
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*Strasbourg/BNU/Angelo Marcopolo/- Experienced, Long-Time former President of ECHR, and currently President of the prestigious International Institute for Human Rights "René Cassin", Professor Jean-Paul Costa, (Comp. several Statements to "Eurofora" already published in the Past), Replying to an "Eurofora" Question on Toopical Developments about the Controversial BioEthical Issue of Surrogate Mothers, (alias "GPA" in French), confirmed his general Warning against "Post-Humanism" Dangers, as a matter of a Wider Principle, even if he made a special reserve, however, as far as it concerns a Particular matter of Childrens' Rights", (which is, however, Contested by several mainstream MEPs, and probably even by a Majority of MEPs, at CoE's PanEuropean Parliamentary Assembly : See Infra).


The move Topicaly came while a CoE Assembly's Committee was Hotly Debating and due to Vote a Controversial Draft Report and Resolution precisely on "Surrogacy" Tomorrow in Paris, (See infra), and was Sponsored by powerful Mutual Savings French Bank "Caisse d' Epargne" of Strasbourg's Alsace Region, which traditionaly keeps close relations to Germany's "Sparkäse" Network, including on various Humanitarian and/or Health Researh projects, (Comp. Infra).


Costa, in a landmark Speech at a Conference organised this Evening in Strasbourg's National University Library (BNU in French), had characteristicaly placed "Post-Humanism" and/or "Trans-Humanism", in a Similar Rank among "Dangers for Abuse" against Human Rights, as, f.ex. "NAZIs" Racism and Other "Ideologies which Negate the Human being" in the Past, side by side with the Nowadays "so-called Islamic State"'s Deadly Terrorism, even against Innocent Civilian People, that he Denounced as "a Tragic Negation of (Human) Life and Liberty", that, "in fact, has Nothing to do with Religion", since, inter alia, it also has made a lot of Muslim Victims (mainly of Shiite confession), as he said.


Referring to such "a Movement born some Decades ago in California" (USA), and "called Post-Humanism or Trans-Humanism", which "Claims to Enhance the Physical and/or Mental Capacities of some Human Beings, on the Basis of the Development of Bio-Technologies", Costa also Denouncved that Trend as "Dangerous, and even Very Dangerous", "as is also (Genetic) Cloning", - already Prohibited by CoE's PanEuropean/International Convention on Bio-Medicine and Human Rights", known as "Oviedo's BioEthical Convention", by the Name of that Spanish City in which it had been Initialy SIgned, back on 1998), as well as by a UNO General Assembly Resolution (which wants to OutLaw also the so-called "Therapeutic Cloning", i.e. the Cloning of Human Embryos for Genetic Manipulation in view of alleged "Medical Research Tests", etc, adopted on 2004), but also Various Other National, Regional or International Legal Texts - "that I Find InHuman", as he pointed out.


Significantly, President Costa's Conference was Titled : "Human Rights and Humanism", i.e. was related also to values and stakes concerning all Humankind.


Already, anOther Experienced actor at the PanEuropean Cultural Landscape, Jerome Clement, former President of Franco-German/European Radio-TV "ARTE" (HeadQuartered in Strasbourg, near EU Parliament's main Building), and currently President of the prestigious "Fondation de l' Alliance Francaise", speaking earlier here to Strasbourg's Journalists, including "Eurofora", during a Press-Lunch organized by Strasbourg's "Press-Club", was 1st to Speculate that "Post-Humanism" might, eventualy, become, in one way or another, even a Main Issue for "Hot" Public Debates f.ex. during the forthcoming, Crucial Presidential Elections in France, between April and May 2017, (See relevant "Eurofora"'s NewsReport at : ...).

"Eurofora" observed, in this regard, that, concerning the also "InHuman" and "Dangerous" Threat to Spread a Controversial and UnPopular "Surrogate Mothers" practice, (generaly known as "GPA", i.e. "Procreation for Others", in French language), which notoriously Threatens to Downgrade Women's wombs into Commercial merchandises, while also provoking obvious Risks for Genetic Manipulation of Human Embryos at a more or less Large Scale)", several Observers had Recently Criticized, inter alia, also a Controversial Ruling just issued, during this Summer 2016, by the French Highest Court for Legal Complaints against Decisions Taken by Public Authorities, the "Council of State" (alias : "Conseil d'Etat"), which, while still with Holding its Final Decision on that "GPA" Controversy (Comp. Supra), has, nevertheless, been Accused to -indirectly but surelty- Open a Breach towards Progressively Recognizing, eventualy, in the Future, totaly or partially, even that Horrible "Surrogate Mothers"' practice of (mainly Poor and/or Oppressed) Women pushed to Sell or Hire their Womb to Strangers in order to be abused for Artificial TransPlantations of In Vitro Fertilized Eggs, etc., blatantly Exposed to Easy Genetic Manipulations, Difficult or Impossible to Apprehend and/or Prevent sufficiently On Time.


In the Reply that he have us, President Costa, after Kindly Saluting "Eurofora"s co-Founder as a Journalist that he Personaly "Knew Well" (Comp. Supra), First observed that, indeed, "Your Question is Interesting, because it touches upon 2 Aspects of Human Life", as he said.


But, in substance, after reminding the Fact that, at least until now, the Controversial and UnPopular "Surrogate Mothers" ("GPA") practice has been "Suspended" in France and Countries, where it remains OutLawed as such, he also Felt that, only as far as it might Concent "the Best Interests of the Child", that recent controversial Ruling by the French Council of State, which allowed, for the 1st Time, for Children Born Aboard by Surrogacy (Prohibited in France) to be Officialy Registered as Sons or Girls of their Artificial Parents (i.e. those who "Bought" or "Hired" anOther Woman's Womb in order to Artificialy obtain a Child : Comp. also Supra), might, eventualy, be considered, exceptionaly, as Legitimated by a so-called "Right of any Child to have a Legal Identity", as he said, (pointing at anOther, mostly Technical or Practical matter, officialy UnRelated to "Surrogacy", but which may, obviously, be Abused as a Pretext for ByPassing, in certain cases, the persisting Prohibitions of "GPA" : Comp. Infra).


By doing so, Naturaly, Costa didn't Deny explicitly at all the Well-Founded Nature of the Widely Supported and Popular Legal Prohibition of that Horrible and Dangerous practice of "Surrogate Mothers", (notorioussly abused often in some Poor Areas f.ex. in India, etc), but, on the Contrary, went on to Acknowledge anew the "Great Topical Importance" of BioEthhical Principles nowadaysn as he Confirmed to "Eurofora" also later-on, this same Evening.


Indeed, (while Visiting Recently Strasbourg as Invited Keynote Speaker at a Political Event), Famous Writer and Politician Henri Guaino, a Long-Time No 2 Senior Councilor at the French Presidential Palace "L' Elysée", during Nicolas Sarkozy's 2007-2012 Presidency, and currently Elected MP at the French National Assembly, as well as a Candidate for the 2017 Presidential Election, a Gaullist, who has also become Known as one among the Leaders of the Popular Movement which emerged since 2013-2014+ in France, (following also Various other, Similar Trends for Growing Popular Protests, mutatis-mutandis, f.ex. in the UK, Croatia, Slovakia, Hungary, Russia, Italy, etc., even at the USA, etc), against Controversial Attempts to Impose not only a "Same Sex Marriage", but even UnPopular Submission of Children to Homosexuals' Power under Pretext of "Adoption", anounced to "Eurofora" his Intention to Call for "a Constitutional Reform, in order to Ensure that Homosexuals doN't get a Right over Children", in one way or another. Otherwise, inevitable Risks, both Against Childrens' Rights, Natural Family and even Humankind, particularly if that might result in a Growing Number of various Artificial Procreations of Human beings, including through Artificial Insemination of "Surrogate Mothers", etc, Risking to give too much Power over Human Births to a few Technocrats. 


And, as far as the above-mentioned, Controversial and UnPopular "Surrogacy" is concerned more particularly, (Comp. Supra), Experienced, meainstream CoE Assembly's MEP, Valeriu Ghiletchi, a ChristianDemocrat/EPP from Moldova, former Long-Time President of PACE's Social+Family affairs Committee, had already Warned "Eurofora", as Early as, already since the Latest, June 2016, CoE's PanEuropean Parliamentary Assembly's plenary Session in Strasbourg, (Comp. "Eurofora"s various NewsReports from that PACE June Session, f.ex. at : ... + ... +..., etc), that a Draft Report, prepared by a Socialist MEP, Petra de Sutter from Belgium, about "Surrogate Mothers", was, in fact, Attempting to Open Breaches towards a Dangerous Spread, in real practice, of that Controversial and UnPopular, blatant Violation of Both Womens' and Childrens' Human Rights, which provoked also obvious Risks against Humankind, (mainly by facilitating Massive Genetic Manipulations of Human Embryos, Contrary to Natural Births), under the Disguise of sme so-called "Childrens' Rights", which, in fact, were Exploited there as a Pretext.


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 bnucdeinternational_human_rights_institute_conference_eurofora_400


By the way, Introducing President Costa's exceptional Conference, BNU's New Director, Alain Colas, observed, inter alia, that the CoE is maintaining a Collection of unique Original Documents inside that landmark, Historic but recently fully ReNovated Building, and anounced his Intention to augment, in the foreseable Future, various such "Cultural InterMediation" Events of Topical Scientific and/or Socio-Political Interest.


Even more Deeply Rooted into Strasbourg's area Civil Society, Costa's Speech on "Human Rights and Humanism", (attended by a Numerous Audience from the CoE itself, ECHR, the BNU and the rest of Strasbourg's University, as well as from various Diplomatic Representations across CoE's 47 Member Countries, Human Rights and/or European affairs Students or PhD Researchers, etc, who Raised Many Questions, following that of "Eurofora"), had been Organized by an Historicaly Original Bank : "La Caisse d' Epargne" (Savings' Cash Desk) for the Alsace Region, which is particularly Competent also for Franco-German, as well as Swiss and even Austria-oriented Economic/Financial relations, as its Senior Officer, Member of the Governing Board, in charge of such Trans-National links, Marion-Jacques Bergthold told "Eurofora".

 
 
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This "Caisse d'Epargne", Mutual Savings Bank, which belongs to the 2nd Biggest Cooperative Bank in the World, and is the 2nd Biggest Bank also in France, has very Close and Systematic Relations with an Equivalent German Banking Group, that of "SparKäse", present throughout all the Territory of Germany and well beyond, Bergthold and other Officials told us, (including from Germany's "SparKäse") : Whenever such a German-speaking Businessman wishes to extend his activities in France, we systematicaly offer to Help him to move efficiently into the French Legal and practical Landscape, added Bergthold.


Historicaly, the "Caisse d'Epargne" movement had started, as Early as since 1818, already as a kind of "Philanthropic" endeavour, with a Social focus aiminng, particularly, to Help Workers SafeGuard their Salary Savings for Family, Health, Housing a.o. Insurance-like, but recently Evolved into one among the most Performant, even Digital-era equiped, fully-fledged Bank, (including "Natexis" Investment News and Financial Hub), Emilie Nauwelaers, its Communication Director, reminded to "Eurofora".


Earlier Today, "Caisse d' Epargne" signed a Sponsorship Agreement with the International Human Rights' Institute "René Cassin", according to which the Strasbourg Region Alsace's Savings Bank donated to Costa's prestigious Organisation an Annual Grant of 20.000 € during 3 Years, (i.e. more than 60.000 € in Total), destinated to Human Rights Education and Research.  

 
 
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But, more generaly, "Humanistic" concerns have always been at the forefront of "Caisse d'Epargne/SparKäse"'s policies, including by the Creation, several Years ago, of " Foundation Rhenan Solidarity", to help Old and/or Handicaped, as well as Illiterate Youngsters and other Fragile People, such as, f.ex. Poor People risking elsewhere "Bank Exclusion, sometimes just for 20 € !", as Explained, inter alia, the Experienced and charming "Caisse d' Epargne"'s Orientation and onitoring Council's President, Astrid Boos, (who Signed earler that Sponsorhsip Deal, together with Professor Costa, and that Savings Bank's CEO Luc Carpentier).


Topicaly, among the above-mentioned "Rhenan Solidarity Foundation"- supported Projects, is also included Medical Research officialy focused on Finding Cancers' a.o. Therapies. 

 

(../..)

 

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("DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora"s Subscribers/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.

imag0335_400


      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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