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Opinions & Interviews

2 Nov 2017

Belarus interested in further interaction with Council of Europe

Belarus interested in further interaction with Council of Europe

MINSK, 2 November (BelTA) - Belarus would like to continue cooperation with the Council of Europe, Andrei Bushilo, the head of the pan-European cooperation department at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Belarus, said during the presentation of informational materials of the Council of Europe for members of the legal profession under the project “Human Rights For All”, BelTA has learned.

“On behalf of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs I would like to welcome the presentation of the materials on the European Convention on Human Rights. This convention is the principal document of the Council of Europe. This organization is an important pillar of the common humanitarian and legal space in Europe,” Andrei Bushilo noted.

“Not a member of the Council of Europe, Belarus maintains active cooperation with the oldest international organization in Europe. Our country is a party to 14 conventions and agreements of the Council of Europe in culture, education, law, fight against human trafficking, sport. But we have not stopped at that. Currently the Council of the Republic is considering a bill on the ratification of the additional protocol to the convention against the use of doping. Belarus takes part in seven Council of Europe’s steering committees. We are part of other committees in the capacity of an observer,” Andrei Bushilo noted.

The Council of Europe’s action plan for Belarus, which includes 29 areas, is currently underway. Thanks to this, Belarusian specialists take part in approximately 30 activities of the Council of Europe monthly; about 5 of them are held in Belarus. In cooperation with the Council of Europe, Belarusian experts have the opportunity to get acquainted with advanced foreign practices in various fields, and to demonstrate their own achievements, promote their expertise in the field of human rights, democracy and the rule of law.

“We welcome this event. Its title Human Rights for All is very symbolic: no one has a monopoly on imposing its view on democracy, on human rights. The event is attended by a wide range of professionals from among the judiciary, lawyers, MPs, which confirms the interest of Belarusian experts in the practices and experience of the Council of Europe, the European Court of Human Rights,” Andrei Bushilo noted.

He expressed confidence that despite some “turbulence” that the Council of Europe is currently undergoing, this organization can become a truly pan-European home for all European countries with equal rights and responsibilities.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs stands ready to support the further development of the dialogue between Belarus and the Council of Europe

In turn, Frederik Coene, a representative of the EU Delegation to Belarus, emphasized the importance of the issue discussed at the event. The event was also addressed by Mikhail Lobov, the head of the human rights policy and cooperation department at the Council of Europe.

The participants of the presentation also discussed access to quality legal literature on the European Convention on Human Rights as a condition for its effective application, the interpretation of the European Convention and other international instruments by national and international courts.


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