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POLITICS

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CoE Ministerial Session Convenes in Nicosia

CoE Ministerial Session Convenes in Nicosia

The Council of Europe Committee of Ministers convenes on May 19 in Nicosia for its annual session, hosting 28 Foreign Ministers, 8 Deputy Foreign Ministers and 10 Permanent Representatives of the 47 member states of the Council.

The 127th Ministerial Session, which marks the conclusion of the six-month Cyprus Chairmanship of the Council of Europe, will be chaired by the Cypriot Minister of Foreign Affairs and Committee of Ministers Chairman Ioannis Kasoulides. In the morning, President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades will open the session at the Conference Center.

The Council of Europe’s Convention on Offences relating to Cultural Property, the only international treaty specifically dealing with the criminalization of illicit trafficking of cultural property, such as the plundering of Palmyra by Daesh, will be open for signature at the session.

Under agenda item “Reinforcing democratic security in Europe” Ministers will discuss the Secretary General’s report on “State of democracy, human rights and the rule of law in Europe: Populism - How strong are Europe`s checks and balances”.

Under the same agenda item they will also discuss “fight against terrorism”, “migration” and “conflicts and crises in Europe: the role of the Council of Europe.”

Securing the long-term effectiveness of the ECHR system, the Council of Europe policy towards neighbouring regions and co-operation with the EU will also be discussed, the Cyprus News Agency reports.

During the session, Ministers will adopt guidelines to improve the support, information and compensation provided to victims of terrorist attacks and an Action Plan on Protecting Refugee and Migrant Children in Europe.

At the closing of the session, Cyprus will hand over the chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers to the Czech Republic.

Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland, Deputy Secretary General Gabriella Battaini-Dragoni, ECtHR President Guido Raimondi, Commissioner for Human Rights Nils Muižnieks and President of the Congress Gudrun Mosler-Törnström will attend the Ministerial Session.

Stella Kyriakides, Head of the Cyprus delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), will address the session on behalf of PACE President Pedro Agramunt, after the Bureau declared last month that it has no confidence in him as the President of the Assembly.

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