Council of Europe tagged posts

EU and Council of Europe urge Belarus to abolish death penalty

European Day against the Death Penalty

Strasbourg, 09.10.2013 – The Secretary General of the Council of Europe, Thorbjørn Jagland, and the European Union’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton, have issued a joint declaration to mark the 7th European Day against the Death Penalty (10 October).

In the declaration, Secretary General Jagland and High Representative Ashton reiterate their strong opposition to the use of capital punishment, underling its inhumane and cruel nature and its failure to prevent crime.

Encouraged by the growing momentum towards worldwide abolition, they nevertheless state that the resumption of executions in different parts of the world and voices in favour of the death penalty – including in Europe – show the continuing need to spell out why it runs contrary to...

Read More

Secretary general hopes that Belarus will join Council of Europe


Thorbjorn Jagland, secretary general of the Council of Europe, expressed hope that Belarus would join the organization and ratify the European Convention on Human Rights.

Speaking at a meeting of the Russian State Duma’s international affairs committee in Moscow, Mr. Jagland emphasized the importance of the convention, which he said provides a Europe-wide system of human rights protection, according to Russia’s Regnum news agency.

Belarus is the only country in Europe that is not a member of the Council of Europe. The main obstacle for Belarus’ accession to the Council is the use of the death penalty.

In 1993, the Belarusian parliament was granted special guest status at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), but was stripped of it in 1996 following a referendum that...

Read More

CoE Secretary General condemns prison sentence against Belarus human rights defender

Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland stated :

I strongly condemn the harsh prison sentence pronounced today against human rights defender Ales Bialiatski for alleged tax evasion. Mr Bialiatski’s treatment is a clear example of the authorities’ persistent harassment of the work of civil society organisations especially in the wake of the 19 December 2010 presidential elections. He must be set free unconditionally, as all the other political prisoners, and allowed to carry on his work protecting and upholding human rights in Belarus, without pressure upon either him or the Viasna NGO.

Strasbourg, 24.11.2011


Read More