Strasbourg, 15.05.2012 - Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland has warned that discrimination and prejudice against lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people continues to blight the lives of millions of Europeans and cannot be left unanswered. In a statement issued today he said:
“LGBT people still face intolerant attitudes and social barriers across most, if not all, Council of Europe member states. Recent judgments of the European Court of Human Rights point at unjustified bans or administrative obstacles imposed on gay pride parades. They underline problems related to discrimination in granting social rights such as the right to employment. A number of applications pending before the Court concern the incrimination of “propaganda of homosexuality” and could lead to violations of freedom of expression. The introduction of such legislation has often started at the local or regional level but in recent months is finding an echo at national level in some countries.
Seminar on Adoption and the Rights of People/Children with Disabilities (RU)
A seminar on Adoption and the Rights of People/Children with Disabilities was held in Istanbul, Turkey, on 25-27 April, as part of the Council of Europe Confidence Building Measures Programme.
The event provided over 30 policy-makers and practitioners and the representatives from Ombudsman offices from Chisinau and Tiraspol with comprehensive information about international and European norms governing the adoption and international legal framework for protection of people/children with disabilities.
Council of Europe to organise ‘Sport Instead of Drugs’ Tag Rugby Tournament (EN) (RO) (РУ)
Chisinau, 25 April 2012 - Council of Europe Programme on Confidence Building Measures Across the River Nistru/Dniestr is organising a Tag Rugby Tournament during 28-29 April in Chisinau and Tiraspol.
The main goal of the Tag Rugby Tournament is to improve the life skills of the participants (resist group/peer pressure, etc.) and raise public awareness of the danger of drugs and other substances. Additionally, the tournament aims at building confidence between the populations on both sides of the river and engaging disadvantaged young people in sport.
Governments and journalists share responsibility for a free press
Strasbourg, 02.05.2012 – Council of Europe Secretary General Thorbjørn Jagland has warned that close and non-transparent relationships between media and governments are a risk to pluralistic societies. In a statement to mark World Press Freedom Day he said:
"Freedom of expression is a fundamental right, enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights. A free press is vital for any democracy. Elected politicians have a duty to ensure that journalists can work freely and without fear of state repression. The Council of Europe promotes press freedom by advising governments on media legislation and, where necessary, by helping member states to meet their obligations under the Convention through specific co-operation programmes.
PACE President in Transnistria: frozen conflicts must not cause any more killing
Strasbourg, 04.04.2012 – "It is totally unacceptable that in the 21st century so-called frozen conflicts can still cause terrible human tragedies," said Jean-Claude Mignon, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), following his meeting today with the family of Vadim Pisar, a citizen of the Republic of Moldova killed on 1 January 2012 when crossing a checkpoint on the boundary with the Transnistrian region.
"This awful misunderstanding shows the potentially lethal consequences of the mere existence of this type of conflict, which is a throwback to the past. After my talks with the highest authorities of the Republic of the Moldova and the leaders of Transnistria, I am convinced that ,PACE could step up its contribution to resolving the conflict in Transnistria. The election of Mr Shevchuk and the resuming of negotiations within the 5+2 framework are creating the right conditions for real progress," said Mr Mignon.