Spring session, Strasbourg - 26 - 30 April 2010

parliamentary assembly

Addresses by Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich and Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov, as well as a series of debates on the consequences of the economic crisis, are among highlights of the Parliamentary Assembly’s forthcoming spring session.

The parliamentarians will debate a report on discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation and gender identity, which calls for the legal recognition of same-sex partnerships across Europe, as well as the consequences of the war between Georgia and Russia, with an intervention from the former head of the international fact-finding mission on the conflict Ambassador Heidi Tagliavini.

The Head of the Swiss Federal Department of Justice and Police Eveline Widmer-Schlumpf is due to take part in a debate on effective implementation of the European Convention on Human Rights, following the recent decisions taken at the Interlaken conference for streamlining the procedures of the European Court of Human Rights. The Head of the Swiss Federal Department of Foreign Affairs Micheline Calmy-Rey will also present the traditional Communication from the Committee of Ministers to the Assembly.

Other subjects on the agenda include dealing with sea piracy, commemorating the victims of the great famine (Holodomor) in the former USSR, protecting whistle-blowers and drawing up a European code of conduct for lobbying. Council of Europe Human Rights Commissioner Thomas Hammarberg will present his annual activity report for 2009.

Also foreseen is a debate on Montenegro’s honouring of its obligations and commitments to the Council of Europe – the first since it joined the Organisation three years ago – and a debate on the state of post-monitoring dialogue with Bulgaria.

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