In this interview, Catherine Lalumière, former Secretary General of the Council of Europe, discusses the implications of the plan for a European Confederation first proposed by François Mitterrand, President of the French Republic, on 31 December 1989 in the hope of extending, alongside the Council of Europe, the European area within an institution fostering dialogue and cooperation among all the democratic nations of the continent.
On 26 November 1991, Catherine Lalumière, Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, grants an interview to the French daily newspaper Le Monde in which she sets out her views on the future of the European continent and outlines the new political role of the Council of Europe.
In this interview, Catherine Lalumière, former Secretary General of the Council of Europe, describes this institution’s political revival following the fall of the Berlin Wall in November 1989 and the democratisation of the countries of the former Communist bloc.
On 16 June 1992, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe considers a report on the enlargement of the Strasbourg organisation and lays down terms for accession and the institutional and geopolitical implications thereof.
On 3 February 1993, in preparation for the accession of the countries of Central and Eastern Europe (CEECs), the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe expresses its wish to involve closely in the Council of Europe’s work those CEECs that have converted to democracy.
On 30 June 1993, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe submits to the Committee of Ministers a recommendation on adapting the role and responsibilities of the organisation to the new international situation in Europe.
On 29 September 1993, Catherine Lalumière, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, emphasises to the Parliamentary Assembly the importance of the Vienna Summit to be held on 9 October and emphasises the role of the Council of Europe on the international stage.
On 9 October 1993, the Heads of State or Government of the member states of the Council of Europe, meeting in Vienna, adopt a Declaration which confirms the organisation’s pan-European vocation and sets out new political priorities, including the protection of national minorities and the fight against all forms of racism, xenophobia and intolerance.
On 26 January 1994, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe comments on the decisions adopted on 9 October 1993 in Vienna by the Heads of State or Government of the member states of the organisation.
On 11 May 1994, Catherine Lalumière, Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, analyses the institutional and political repercussions of the gradual enlargement of the Council of Europe to include the countries of Eastern Europe now operating under a democratic system of government.
On 2 February 1996, Daniel Tarschys, Secretary-General of the Council of Europe, gives a progress report on the negotiations for the accession of the Russian Federation to the Council of Europe and lays down the terms for and financial implications of such enlargement.
On 28 February 1996, the Russian Federation becomes a full member of the Council of Europe. From left to right: Daniel Tarschys, Secretary General of the Council of Europe, congratulates Yevgeny Primakov, Russian Prime Minister.
On 27 September 1996, the Council and the European Commission adopt a joint text relating to cooperation between the European Union and the Council of Europe in all the areas covered by the Community treaties and the Maastricht Treaty.
On 28 January 1997, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe considers a report which deplores the continued implementation of capital punishment in Russia despite its accession to the Council of Europe.
As a defender of human rights and the rule of law, the Council of Europe has made a significant contribution to nurturing the aspirations held by civil society in the Eastern bloc countries to adopt these same prerogatives.
Jacques F. Poos, former Luxembourg Foreign Minister and former President of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, outlines the past and present role of the Council of Europe now that it has been enlarged to include Russia.