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Home arrow newsitems arrow CoE Chair, French EUMinister Montchalin on Russia/EU Enlargment/BREXIT/Germany/Economy+Democracy Now

CoE Chair, French EUMinister Montchalin on Russia/EU Enlargment/BREXIT/Germany/Economy+Democracy Now

Written by ACM
Friday, 14 June 2019


*Strasbourg/BNU/Angelo Marcopolo/- Logically KickStarting in Strasbourg's National University Library the "First" in a forthcoming Series of Periodical Dialogues between Ministers and Citizens on Topical Issues of common interest, where European Journalists, including "Eurofora", had been Invited, the current CoE's President-in-office : Young new French Minister for European affairs, Amelie de Montchalin, Aged Just 33 y.o., Surprized from the outset by Appearing as a much more Mature, well Grown up Human Personality than one would guess, (that we had just Crossed in the Past, but not really met, except from a vivid Memory of her Interrogative, Serious and profound eyesight).

Interestingly and Topically Starting and Concluding by the state and perspectives of Democracy Nowadays, just after the May 2019 EU Elections, this exercice followed a Long Thread piercing through Various Issues : Global Economy, Germany, EU's Enlargement in Western Balkans, CoE and Russia/Turkey, BREXIT, East/West European Countries, Young People's prospects, etc, (See Infra).


- Replying to a 1st Critical Question, which Opposed the Fact that no less than 34 Political Parties had just contested the Latest EU Parliament's Elections in France, (in a Similar move as, also, in Other Key EU Countries, as, f.ex., Germany, a.o.), while Establishment Medias' overall behavior, including allocaated Time for Public Debate, made some Doubt "if Democracy was Real" Nowadays, Amelie de Montchalin went right to the Essenials :

- "First of all, I am a Citizen, working Family Mother of 3, and Not a Professional Politician. Because, Politics, for me, are like a Mission !", she stressed from the outset.

This came from someone who had personaly chosen to make University Studies, in Parallel, Both on History, at Paris' prestigious Sorbonne, (where President Macron presented his main Proposals for Changes and Reforms in Europe on 2017, and "Eurofora" had a Chance to meet Simone Weil on 2010: See ..,), as well as, also, on Economy, at Paris-Dauphine. While, (by an Irony of the Sort for a European and even French), she studied "Public Administration" in a Master at ...USA's "Harvard Kennedy School", (named after the Legendary Murdered President John F. Kennedy, Brother of the even more Legendary Robert Kennedy, also Murdered soon afterwards). Economy became her main Job, both in the Private Sector, in EU Commission, and as a specialized MP, before, at last, Fusionning Together with History, from this Year 2019, as New EU Minister.

- In Democracy it's Better Not to always Delegate Everything to Others, But also for Citizens to be Committed and Participate, advised de Montchalin, Expressing her Satisfaction for a "Record" High, Popular Turnout of an Absolute Majority of 51% of Voters in the Recent EU Elections, for the 1st Time in the Last 20 Years (1999 - 2019).

- In fact, this Government is "Trying to promote the Emergence of a Deliberative and Participatory Democracy", she Stressed, (indirectly, but surely, Refering, inter alia, also to Macron's landmark Speech of September 2017, Symbolically given at Athens' Acropolis' "Pnix" Rock, where Ancient Greek Direct Democracy had been Invented and practiced, But also, interestingly Near to "Eurofora'"'s 1997-2019 Project for Dialogue, with Modern Technologies, between Citizens and Public Administrations Before Important Decisions are taken which Affect their LIves and/or Society at large).

    =>  - Indeed, "Democracy Needs a Time for Debates", and, "at any case, it's a Gain for Democracy to have More Time for Exchanges", for Public Dialogue, underlined, in Substance, the new European Affairs' Minister, Amelie de Montchalin

+ Returning Back to this Matter, even at the Conclusion of Today's Meeting (Comp. Supra), she also stressed that, "a real Democracy, Obliges" its Agents "to be Accountable" vis a vis the People, and "to Explain" the main Issues, as well as to "Make Visible their Activities", and, "Most of all : to Reply to Citizens' concerns".

>>>Significantly, this was Topically underlined, by the Young French new EU affairs Minister, just a Few Days After Prime Minister Edouard Philippe (to whom referred the Press Release for de Montchalin's visit to Strasboug, send to "Eurofora" and other Journalists), officially Announced, at the National Assembly in Paris, the Intention to Table, on July in the Government, and on September in the Parliament, a very Controversial Draft Law allowing, for the 1st Time in History, many Thousands of Artificial Births of Human Beings via Genetic Technologies, on the Demand by Lesbians. This had been a pre-Electoral Macron's Concession to a Lobby of LGBT and Technocrats in the Past (2016-2017), Before the Recent Global Scare of November 2018, when a Chinese "Doctor", linked to some USA Lobbies of Former POTUS Barack Hussein Obama, had Angered the Chinese Authorities, and provoked a Global Row, by, precisely, giving Artificially Birth to 2 Babies just after Manipulating their Genome with Changes irremediably Herritable by Next Generations' GermLine, ("Crisps-car-9" Gene Editing Technology, which Risks to provoke Cancers, and/or mainly to Artificially Create new Races, etc., with Obvious Threats against Humanity : See http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/coebioethicsdebatechildrenforlesbiansandheritablegenemanip.html , etc).

>>> But, according to French Medias, there is Not enough Time available for a Real Public Debate in the National Assembly during the Autumn 2019, due to already Scheduled Other Draft Laws, as, f.ex. the Budget, etc. And Amelie de Montchalin has, reportedly, Warned, already since March 2019, (i.e. just before she was appointed Minister for EU affairs), that it would, obviously, Not Allow a Serious Public Debate, Necessary for such Important Changes to the French Legislation on BioEthics, if this was cornered at that, too Busy, period of Time...

+ Moreover, Meanwhile, the President of France's National BioEthics' Committee, Professor Delfraissy, has just Confirmed, to "Eurofora", that, among those Issues on which there is "a Big Gap" between consulted People's Views and Government-proposed Draft Changes, is, precisely, also this Matter, (See: ..., etc). And the Public Consultation, which was made with a special Web Site, has already demonstrated that the Most Controversial Issue, was, precisely that of various Artificial Methods of giving Birth to Human Beings through sophisticated Technologies, which had gone too far, according to a Large Majority of the People who Participated to those Votes, (See relevant Screenshots, etc). In Addition, since that March-April 2018 Consultation, there has Not Been any other, New Public Consultation, Not even After the Heritable Gene Editing Scandal of November 2018 (Comp. Supra), which should, normally, Augment the Number of People Opposed to so Important Dangers Now, on Mid-2019+...

- Significant of the Volatility of Positions even of Key Political Actors on this "Hot" BioEthical Issue, it's even ...Prime Minister Philippe himself, who used to be "Against" such a Controversial Measure Initially, before Changing views, Later-on, as he has explained.  And this was even BEFORE that November 2018 Heritable Gene Editing Scare !

- Even if Adelie de Montchelin didn't have Today an opportunity to speak more Explicitly about this Concrete Issue, nevertheless, she Topically stressed the General Importance for Democracy  Nowadays, to hold Sufficient Public Debates, and Exchanges of Citizens with Public Administrations on such Crucial Matters for the People, (and, in this particular case : even for all Society and Humanity at large, Comp. Supra), speaking in Strasbourg Today, i.e. shortly After a landmark CoE's Conference, precisely, on "Public Debate" for the "Governance of New Technologies", (See: ..., etc), and as "Eurofora" has just Registered, for possible "Lab" Discussions at the forthcoming "World Forum of Democracy" (November 2019), also our Project, nick-named here "4D" (for "Digital Democratic Dialogue in Decision-Making", between Citizens and Politicians before Measures affecting their Lives and/or Society at large, in Modern Democracy", probably in cooperation with Strasbourg University's "Institute of Research Carré de Malberg", where we are attached as Doctorant for a State PhD Thesis on relevant Legal aspects), after having briefly but topicaly evoked that move also with the CoE's French Presidency's Top Diplomat, Ambassador Mattei, (who encouraged us), as well as CoE's competent Director for Democratic Governance, Claudia Luciani. Meanwhile, de Montchelin, speaking Both as French EU Minister, and CoE's President in office, Announced, Today, also an Intention to Develop further Europe's "Budgets for Citizenship".

+ Interestingly, when "Eurofora" simply evoked our interest on such "Participative Democracy" Projects, in relation also (mutatis -mutandis) with EU's "Lisbon Treaty" provisions for "Regular Dialogue" between Citizens, "Civil Society", and "EU Institutions" on their Activities, (Comp., f.ex., inter ala, also : ..., + ..., etc), and President Macron's initially Positive Reply to "Eurofora"s relevant Question (on April 2018, at Saint Dié : See ...) if he Intends to use that, untaped yet, EU Treaty Potential in order to Boost EU-Citizens Debates Before Decisions, regularly in the Future, Amelie de Montchalin's Press Spokesman immediately pointed at the "Labs for ReHauling Europe" (alias : "Ateliers de ReFondation de l'Europe"), that Macron has Recently launched a call to organise, EU-Wide, "Before the End of 2019".



* Starting to Deal with various other Concrete Issues, the French EU Minister replied to a Question on President Macron's recent Speech, at nearby Geneva, to the International Labour Organisation, on some Strategic Changes in Economy :

- She chose to Highlight mainly the facts that the Economy needs, nowadays, to Better Use its Natural Resources, i.e. in a more Ecological way. Meanwhile, the WorkForce needed a lot of Adequate Education and Training. Last but not least, in order to avoid "a Capitalism going Astray", Workers should get enough to survive from their salaries : For that purpose, it would be good to introduce a kind of "Minimum Wage", which should be Calculated Not in abstract terms, same for all, (because the Living Standards Varied widely among EU Member Countries), but in relation to the 50% of the Median Wage in Each Country.


* Among the Other Questions raised to ADM, one concerned the Franco-German Relations, and particularly the cases of possible Disagreements :

- Germany, sometimes, appears to be "Different", from France. "What should be done ?", she resumed, diplomatically, (in this Delicate Issue, from which obviously depends Europe's Present and foreseable Future).

Significantly, Amelie de Montchalin carefully avoided, here, anything which might, eventually, be perceived as a counter-poductive or damaging provocation, Contrary to anOther, inexperienced French politician, who would have Recently gone as far, according to Press Reports, as to blatantly claim, in Brussels, that, Nowadays, "Europe's Problem is Merkel" (sic !)...

- In fact, most Often, the Main point is that the 2 Countries have "Different Political Systems", the New French Minister for EU Affairs prefered to Focus on :

- Indeed, France has a Presidential system, while Germany basically has a Parliamentary one. So, while in France main Decisions can be Taken or Hihlighted by the President of the Republic, on the Contrary, in Germany, they have to be taken by the Parliament (Bundestag), where there are "Tensions", and "a Need for Compromises", therefore, "Negotiations" (among Political Parties).

=> So, several times, when France advances an Idea on Europe, Germany might seem to Refuse that, but, in Fact, it simply "is Not Ready, yet", f.ex., because this might need some Months' time, she estimated.

+ Meanwhile, concerning, f.ex. "AKK", (i.e. Angie Merkel's Ally, Friend and Successor in the Governing, CDU Party), Amelie de Montchalin, observed, inter alia, also the Fact that she is "from Sarre", i.e. not far away from here, "knows" how to work together with France, etc.

>>> At any case, France's way to seek Agreement, usually is to Speak and Explain, as well as to Present concret Projects, and Try to Attract other Partners together, she observed.


* As current PanEuropean CoE's President in Office, for the Period of May - Novembe 2019, naturally, the French Minister could Not Avoid a Question on the most "Hot" and Topical Issue of Russian MEP's eventual Return, back to CoE's Parliamentary Assembly, after More than 4 Years of an UnPrecedented Absence, since a Manipulative Minority of MEPs had Voted too Heavy "Sanctions" against their Participation, Speech and Voting Rights, under Pretext of the Controversial Ukraine's Conflict, since 2014, (See, f.ex.:  ..., ..., .., etc), in Reaction to which, Moscow has Suspended its Annual Financial Contribution to CoE's Budget from 2017, resulting Nowadays in a situation where even CoE's "Programs for Young People" were reportedly Threatened, Nowadays, to be "Cut" for Economy, as a participant denounced !

+ Given the Fact that the CoE was notoriously Preparing, for this June 2019 in Strasbourg, an Important Attempt to, at last, put a Full Stop, on such Problems (See: ..., etc), the French Presidency's CoE's President-in-office was also asked Today whether, by Solving that Russian Issue, they could also Solve the Problem of Turkey, (who had Earlier asked to Extend the Number of its MEPs to Strasbourg up to the Highest possible level : that of "Grand Payeur" ["Big Payer"], i.e. of those CoE Member States who Pay the Biggest possible Annual Financial Contribution to the CoE's Budget, but, Afterwards, Ankara's Government, Suddenly decided to Stop Paying that Higher Price, WithOut, however, to Lower the Number of its MEPs at the CoE Back to its Previous Level (sic !), thus Obtaining an Undue Benefit, to the Detriment of CoE's already Strained Budget, (and Even withOut Any Previous Warning) !..              

Amelie de Montchalin, in her Answer, replied in General Terms, as a matter of Principle :

- "CoE is a Wonderful Organisation", which allows to All 800+ Millions of Citizens of its 47 Member States to Directly Apply to the ECHR in Strasbourg, whenever they might feel that their Human Rights have been Violated, she underlined from the outset.

=> That's why we are Trying to ensure that All those Countries can stay Full Members of the CoE, and, Naturally, in that case, they Have All to fully Pay their Annual Financial Contribution, so that CoE's Budget has no more problems, including that for Young People policies, she highlighted in reply.  

- Obviously, in order to obtain that, it's also necessary to make some very delicate Diplomatic Efforts : F.ex. you know the Situation in Ukraine, the French EU Minister simply evoked, (while the New Ukranian President, Zelensky, recently Elected, is reportedly due to Meet with French President Macron, next Monday in Paris).

>>> But, at this moment, "I have Good Hope" that things would Go Well, particularly in (crucial) CoE's Meetings that we'll have in about 15 Days (at the PanEuropean Organisation's Parliamentary Assembly's Plenary Session of Summer 2019, where she is due to personally participate, address the Assembly, and Reply to MEP's Questions, as Representative of the French Presidencty of CoE's Highest Political Body : that of its Committee of Ministers).   

- For that purpose, I have Carefully Examined the overall Situation, and Spoken with Many People Nowadays, Amelie de Montchalin added, (probably evoking mainly a recent Important Meeting, in Paris, of CoE Assembly's powerfull "Standing" Committee, and Not only Today in Strasbourg), but withOut explicitly citting concrete Details.


* Her Replies were Longer to Questions concerning EU's Enlargement and Other Policies, mainly towards the Western Balkans, and relevant moves vis a vis Northern Macedonia and Albania.

EU Commission has recently Published its Report on such matters, (shortly After the EU Elections), and such issues are due to be Discussed by EU's Foreign and EU affairs Ministers "Next Tuesday in Luxembourg", where de Montchalin will represent France, as she simply noted.

- But, Amelie de Montchalin Denied a Claim that France might have Already officially decided (as well as the Netherlands, etc) to Refuse the Opening of Accession Negotiations with Northern Macedonie and Albania : In fact, there is "Not Yet" any Official French Policy on that precise point, she stressed, at least for the Time being.

- The Only thing that President Macron has said, in this regard, is that he does Not feel that the Time is ripe Nowadays for Any EU Enlargement, (reportedly as long as Europe has Not yet made Significant Advances towards a ambitious and efficient Integration), she reminded, as a matter of General Principle.

+ This Key Point was Confirmed, also by a Written Official Press Statement Published, later Today, by the French Foreign Ministry in Paris, which also Insists, as a matter of Principle, on the Need for all aspiring Countries, to make Sufficient Efforts to really fullfill the Numerous Conditions set up by the EU, withOut any pre-determined Time Deadline.

- De Montchalin prefered, in Strasbourg, to Focus on the main character of the various decisions concerning EU's Enlargement, as "a long Processus" :

- F.ex., we shall speak about that, Next Week (June 2019) a Luxembourg, (Comp. Supra), while I have Meetings with the Foreign Ministers of Northern Macedonia recently and Albania even Today, and, Afterwards, we shall anew speak again on September, etc., she Simply highlighted.

On this occasion, the French EU affairs Minister acknowledged that Northern Macedonia has recently made Progress, including in the Agreement with Greece, etc., while, another Press Release from the Foreign Ministry in Paris, on her meeting with Albania's Foreign Minister, reminded, inter alia, also the Efforts that Countries aspiring for EU Accesion must accomplish, including on "irregular Migration", etc.

(An Ambiant, but uncertain yet, Feeling of experienced EU Observers, is that, to put it in a Nutshell, in fact, the EU would like to have, sooner or later, an Albania reminiscent of the Famous Historic Personality of a European as Skanderberg Hero, or Writer Ismael Cadaret, etc. But not so much a kind of Residue from the Former Ottoman-Turk Medieval Empire's Foreign Invasion/Occupation. While, as far as Northern Macedonia is concerned, it all seems to be rather a matter of certain key, Concrete Achievements to make asap).  

=> But, Amelie de Montchalin seems to have anOther (Different, perhaps Complementary, but Not necessarily Antagonistic) Viewpoint about Countries aspiring for EU Enlargement, and "particular our Western Balkans' Policies", as she evoked, and Explained Today in Strasbourg :

-  In Practice, any EU's Enlargement Process is a Long Endeavour, mainly about a Series of Legal Requirements, which may be Totalling around ... 6.000 Concrete Questions, she warned.

>>> In Fact, EU Enlargement, might, in some cases and/or periods, be a Bad Solution : F.ex., we have seen various Candidates make Different Pathways, others advance, but others retreat, while Turkey remains at a long standstill, etc.

=> While there are other Important, Real Problems, underlying, beneath the surface : F.ex. a Need for productive 'Economic Investments, Education, Cultural cooperation', etc., the New French Minister for EU Affairs Highlighted, in Substance.

- We saw that, mutatis-mutandis, in one way or another, inter alia f.ex. in some Massive Exodus of Qualified Young People, towards Western Europe, from Ukraine, Lithuania, Romania, and other Countries, she pointed out.

>>> So, EU must pay Attention also to such Legitimate Aspirations of the People living there, in order to Invest in their real Priorities, she advised, in Conclusion, at least for the Time being.


* Last, but not least, while the UK's Governing Party of Conservatives is currently engaged, during the Next Few Days, into a Crucial Process of Choices for its New Political Leadership, the new French EU affairs Minister, (who has Recently paid an Official Visit to the London), was invited to present her view on "BREXIT", as things stand nowadays :

- First of all, BREXIT is a matter of "Sovereign" Decisions, she stressed, as a matter of Principle, from the outset.

- Soft or Hard, with or withOut Deal, Brexit or no Brexit : Whatever happens, "My Conviction" is that it's mainly a Question for the British to Decide. The Decision must come from the British System itself, and Not from EU Commission or Anybody else, because, Otherwise, there is a Risk to be accused for Foreign Inteference, she Warned.

- Most Important : At any case, even if there is BREXIT, the Future Relations with Europe will be Important, and, especially, those with France, particularly Developed, Amelie de Montchalin Optimistically stressed :

- F.ex., I have partly Grown up Near Calais' Seaside area, where the Coasts-lines between the UK's and France's Shores are very Close to each other : They are Not going to be Displaced, Neither pushed one far Away from the other, only because there might be a "Brexit" sooner or later !, she pointed out.

- So, whenever the British would like to go to (Continental) Europe, they would Always have to Cross, mostly through France, if not through the Netherlands, etc., she practically observed.

=> That naturally means that Our Future Relations are going to be "De Facto" Important, the new French EU affairs Minister estimated.

+ More generally, Our Future Relation, between the UK and the EU, will be, de Facto, Big and Intensified !", de Montchalin stressed in Conclusion.


- In fact, My Impression is that the UK did Not like to have a "Political" Europe, but, on the Contrary, wants to have Good Trade Relations, Cooperation on Security, Scientific Research, Historic Cultural links, etc., i.e. a Large Horizon in front of us, she advanced.

However, "Eurofora"s view, and 1st hand experience from Brussels' Summits to Simple UK Citizens then, is that such an overall appreciation seems to Fit Better the Idea that former UK Prime Minister David Cameron had initially in mind, than the main Ambiance reigning among most British People at the Moment of the 2015-2016 Referendum, as notoriously Exploited by Nigel Farage+, which was much More Influenced also by that UnPrecedented Giant "Tsunami" of Mass Asylum Seekers/Irregular Migrants, then Tresspassing inside Europe through Turkish Smugglers, and rapidly Reaching the British Coasts, (as well as Germany, up to Scandinavia, etc), while various Brutal Aggressions against innocent Civilian People were just Starting ...

- Already, Back on 2009 EU Parliament's Elections, Farage had managed to "Explode" the Number of his UKIP's MEPs, just by placing their whole Campaign under a Banner's Heading : - "No to Turkey's EU Accession into the EU !", as he had personaly Warned "Eurofora" in Strasbourg, just a week earlier...

+ Similarly, on 2015-2016, he notoriously Brandished everywhere (including at UKIP's Tour Bus) a Big Photo of that Huge "Tsunami" of more than +1,5 Millions Non-European and mostly Heavily Islamized People Massively Tresspassing inside the EU through Turkey, while also Warning Against a Controversial EU - Turkey Deal, obtained by Ankara's Politicians' Blackmail in a Brussels badly hit by Deadly Islamist Terrorism then, which, among others, Promised, then, even a ..."Visa-Free" regime for 81 Millions of Turks throughout the EU !

=> So that, Nowadays, and After several Years of Deadly Islamist Terrorist Attacks, cowardly Targetting innocent Civilian People throughout all the EU, (from Paris to Berlin, and London: many times hit, Manchester, Copenhagen, Stockholm, Helsinki, Barcelona, Brussels and Strasbourg, etc, between 2015-2019), added also to Massive Rape Attacks against Women and even small Children, (some of whom committed Suicide), from Köln 1/2016, UK's Rochdale, up to Finland's Oulu on 2018/2019, etc., and as, in addition, British People's Democratic Vote was blatantly dismissed by an astonishingly Contemptuous Wemnister's Establishment, (whose Behavior had even Surprized EU Commission's President Juncker, as he told Journalists, including "Eurofora", at a Press Conference in Brussels' EU Summit of December 2018 : Comp. ..., etc), it was, obviously, even Easier than before for Farage's new "BREXIT" Party to surf in the latest EU Parliament's Elections of 2019, at the 1st Rank...

>>> So that, if EU Leaders really want also to attract the British People back to the Continental Europe, in one way or another, they should obviously Start from Protecting the elementary Safety of their own EU Citizens, nowadays !

=> Otherwise, the Way Back to the famous "White Cliffs of Dover",

- that "Eurofora"s co-Founder had crossed when he was just a Kid, (as, later-on, Amelie de Montchalin at nearby Calais : Comp. Supra), while coming right through a 1st visit to Paris' "Notre Dame de Paris" unforgettable Historic Ambiance of Victor Hugo, then-

Risks, in such a Future, to Become, in real Practice, much "Longer" than it used to be in the Good Old Times !

>>> On this Key Point, there is, indeed, an Obvious and Rock-Solid, "DE FACTO"...UNITY between the Brittish and the French or German a.o. European PEOPLEs Nowadays...

From this point of view, ADM is Right (Comp. Supra) !












(NDLR: "DraftNews", as already send to "Eurofora"s Donors/Subscribers, earlier. A more accurate, full Final Version, might be published asap. +Fast Translation from the Original in French.)






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They voted to "freeze" UK Government's draft to put People in jail for 42 Days on "anti-terrorist" suspicion without charge, or they abstained. Don't they look suspect ?

CoE's debate on UK controversy stirs PanEuropean check of anti-terror suspects' imprisonment

Former Leftists of the Sixties would boil in hot water if they heard PACE's debate on the controversial 42 days detention without charge, currently drafted by the British Government :

A "Socialist" Government, a Socialist PACE Rapporteur and a Socialist Chair of PACE's Legal Committee, opposed a .. "Conservative" amendment (supported by .. Liberals, Democrats, etc), to freeze the measure, in order to protect Citizens' Freedom, by "waiting" until CoE's Venice Committee checks its conformity with Human Rights' principles.

"Left"'s support to Conservative-Lib.Dem's criticism, wasn't enough to obtain a majority, nor to make things as they were back in the good old days, when "Left" and "Right" had a clear meaning, as "liberty" and "restrictions"...

Conservatives and most Democrats were joined by the Left in voting for the "freeze", as well as Liberal Paul Rowen, while Socialist MEP Ivan Popescu, an experienced MEP from Ukraine (PACE Member since 1996-2008) abstained. But most Socialists, added to a few Liberals and EPP's Right, voted against.

Fortunately, someone inside PACE had the wise idea to shorten the Debate for less than 1 Hour, and put it on the Agenda only at the end of an exceptionally busy day, towards the end of the Evening, when most MEPs had already gone to taste wins and foods at various Receptions all around Strasbourg's "European" area : As a result, not even 42 MEPs weren't present..

Socialist Lord Tomlinson accused the leaders of the PanEuropean Assembly, in its highest body : the "Bureau", to "lack wisdom" by deciding to hold a Debate on an issue that neither the Socialist Chair of the Legal Committee, nor its Socialist "reluctant Rapporteur", did "not want to do", ...


Finally, everybody (critics and supporters alike) was happy to agree, in substance, that the controversial measure "may" gravely violate Human Rights, and therefore, PACE asked Legal Experts of Venice Commission to check UK Government''s plans.

But this might take more than .. 42 Days to do, since PACE's Rapporteur asked the Experts to enlarge their study in a PanEuropean comparison of all that is happening on "anti-terrorism" legislation in 47 CoE Member Countries, including Russia, Turkey and Azerbaidjan..

Bad lack : "The existing 28 days’ detention without charge in the UK is, in comparison with other CoE member countries, one of the most extreme : In Turkey, the period is 7,5 days, in France 6 days, in Russia 5 days, and in .. the U.S. and Canada just 2 and 1 days respectively", denounced Democrat MEP Ms WOLDSETH from Norway..


"Numerous respected human rights organisations, including Liberty and Human Rights Watch, have expressed serious concern" "The proposed legislation ...could easily lead to extensive abuses. ...Detention for 42 days means six weeks in which one is taken away from one’s family, friends, home and livelihood only to be let off without being charged. That will destroy lives and isolate communities", she added.

- "3 years ago, the UK Government sought to increase the period of pre-charge detention from 14 days to 90 days. Not long before that, it had been only 7 days. There was a vigorous debate ...and a ...compromise was reached of 28 days. We have to ask whether there are proper safeguards in place to extend the period to 42 days. I suggest that there are fatal flaws", reminded British Conservative Clappison.

- "What sort of society holds someone in detention for 42 days and does not have to tell the person who is in prison why they are there, or explain the suspicions that arose and led to their detention? What sort of society believes that that is the way to treat its citizens? That is an appalling injustice, ...A 42-day detention period will not make the UK safer. Instead, it will be the first step to giving in to terrorists; it is saying that we are prepared to sacrifice our democratic rights and the principles for which we have stood for centuries", criticized British Liberal Michael Hanckock


"Comments made ...by Norwegian delegates are unfortunate", replied British Socialist MEP Ms.Curtis-Thomas, accusing them to "besmirch the reputation of our police force, which is one of the Best in the World", as she said, believing that "there are significant safeguards ...to ensure that individuals are not subjected to unlawful detention"


PACE "has serious doubts whether ...the draft legislation are in conformity with the ...case-law of the European Court of Human Rights. A lack of ..safeguards may lead to arbitrariness, resulting in breaches of ... liberty and ...right to a fair trial". PACE "is particularly concerned that: ..the judge ..may not be in a position to examine whether there exist reasonable grounds for suspecting that the arrested person has committed an offence;"; that "... representation by a lawyer may be inappropriately restricted or delayed;" that "information on the grounds for suspicion of a person ...may be unduly withheld.. ;" that this "may give rise to arrests without the intention to charge;", and; in general, that "prolonged detention without proper information on the grounds for arrest may constitute inhuman treatment", says Klaus De Vries' Report, adopted with 29 votes against zero.


Records don't say if it took him 42 Days to draft his Report, but, at least, he knew why...


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 ?


SMF Recent Topics SA

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