Strasbourg, 10 February 2012 - Invited by President Halonen of Finland, Secretary General Jagland took part in a meeting with the presidents of Italy, Germany, Latvia, Portugal, Hungary, Slovenia and Finland.
Secretary General presented a strategy for the democratic management of diversity in Europe. (see the report “Living Together” by the Group of Eminent Persons). Thorbjørn Jagland warned that Europe’s immigration and integration debate has been hijacked by extremists on both sides. The Secretary General called on Europe’s leaders to “stand up and speak clearly” against discrimination, racism and intolerance towards any social, cultural or religious groups.
Thorbjørn Jagland also briefed the Presidents on the reform of the European Court of Human Rights, currently a high priority for the UK Chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers.