Council of Europe - Committee of Ministers
About the Committee
The Council of Europe founded in 1949, is continent’s oldest political organisation, with headquarters in Strasbourg, France, makes efforts to defend human rights, to develop continent-wide agreements to standardise member countries’ social and legal practices, to promote awareness of a European Identity based on shared values and cutting across different cultures. From 1989, Council of Europe made most efforts and results acting as a political anchor and human rights watchdog for Europe’s post-communist democracies, as well as assisting the countries of central and eastern Europe in carrying out and consolidating political, legal and constitutional reform in parallel with economic reform, providing know-how in areas such as human rights, local democracy, education, culture and the environment.
Topic Area A: Ensuring the integration and protection of national minorities and migrants in the economic, political, and cultural sector.
The European Commission against Racism and Intolerance (ECRI) considers integration to be a two-way process with society, governments and local authorities facilitating, supporting, and promoting the integration efforts of individuals. Inclusion is an approach that values diversity and aims to afford equal rights and opportunities by creating conditions which enable the full and active participation of every member of society. The Council of Europe, recognizing the specific difficulties that national minorities face, has adopted the Framework Convention for the Protection of National Minorities(1998) and has since then implemented several programs for the promotion of minority languages and cultures in cooperation with the European Union.
Alongside the issue of national minorities, many European countries are dealing with the entry and stay of large numbers of migrants who will most likely remain for a long time. ECRI considers that member states need to respond to these new realities, which bring huge potential and value, and invest in integration and inclusion. Success is highly dependent on mainstream public support and engaging the public to see the benefits of diversity in society is crucial. And of course, the earlier integration begins the better the outcome. (“Integration and inclusion”). The participation of migrant-background and minority communities in an economic, political, and cultural level remains a major challenge in European countries, such as Georgia, Greece and the Slovak Republic. (Kefferputz).
Topic Area B: Consequences of the aggression of the Russian Federation against Ukraine: The role of the Council of Europe.