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January 2021 ALDE-PACE newsletter

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January 2021 part-session highlights:

  • PACE held its first session since January 2020. The session was organised in a “hybrid” format: delegations who could not attend Strasbourg sittings participated remotely. With sanitary measures and technical arrangements in place, the session allowed MPs to come together and forge European parliaments’ views on human rights, democracy and the rule of law.
  • ALDE-PACE welcomed the establishment of a new Complementary joint procedure between the Committee of Ministers and the Parliamentary Assembly in response to a serious violation by a member State of its statutory obligations. The group looks forward to working with newly elected Secretary General of the Parliamentary Assembly Despina Chatzivassiliou-Tsovilis (Greece) and Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe Bjørn Berge (Norway). ALDE thanked out-going DSG Gabriela Battaini-Dragoni (in office since 2012) and SG PACE Wojciech Sawicki (in office since 2011) for years of professional service.
  • ALDE-PACE elected four new Vice-Presidents: Béatrice Fresko-Rolfo (Monaco), Yevheniia Kravchuk (Ukraine), Stephanie Krisper (Austria) and Fiona O’Loughlin (Ireland).  
  • All 2020 committee mandates have been reconfirmed. Mònica Bonell (Andorra) replaced Jokin Bildarratz as a vice-chair of the Committee on Migration, Refugees and Displaced Persons. Five sub-committees of the Assembly will also be chaired by ALDE members.
  • Situation of Alexei Navalny: ALDE initiated an extraordinary plenary debate on the arrest and detention of Alexei Navalny and supported the initiative of ALDE President Jacques Maire to launch a separate report looking into the circumstances of Mr Navalny’s arrest and detention after his return to Russia. Jacques Maire and Rik Daems issued statements.      
  • ALDE bureau supported a joint statement on the near total abortion ban in Poland linking it to the erosion of democratic institutions in the country. “We urge Polish ruling coalition to respect the fundamental rights of all Poles to make autonomous decisions about their own bodies and reproductive abilities, which are at the very core of their fundamental right to equality and privacy concerning intimate matters of physical and psychological integrity”.

ALDE-PACE News

Telling the CoE’s story: Iulian Bulai, leader of ALDE-PACE
Parliamentary Assembly Backs Ovchynnykova’s Call for Ocean Protection
Eerik Kross report calls for sanctions on persecutors of Vladimir Kara-Murza