Extracts from the joint debate on human rights and election observation
End production: 07/05/2005 First transmission: 07/05/2008
During the plenary session, the Members of the EP turned their attention to human rights and EU election observation with two separate reports from the Foreign Affairs Committee. The EP annual report on human rights in the world in 2007 looks at a range of human rights issues as well as highlighting the situation in countries of particular concern such as China, Iran and Russia. It also evaluates the EU's efforts to promote human rights through its policies. The second report on EU election observation missions is the first of its kind, and generally supports the EU's observation missions, underlining how crucial they are, especially in developing countries. The committee wants to increase the role of the EP, especially in the immediate post-election period when the new Parliaments are called, and legislators need advice on how to function in a democracy.
Only the original language version is authentic and it prevails in the event of its differing from the translated versions.
||Exterior view of the European Parliament in Brussels
||Marco Cappato, Member of the EP, (in ITALIAN) saying that too often European policies in reality are the policies of Member States only and it is very difficult to have a truly European policy on human rights when the Member States are ensuring their own interests
||Marco Cappato (in ITALIAN) saying that there are also human rights instruments that exist but all too often the European Union does not comply with its own legislation; they have clauses on the respect of human rights in all their cooperation agreements and yet they do not have efficient mechanisms from monitoring at the temporary suspension of those agreements because those clauses are not properly used
||Véronique de Keyser, Member of the EP, (in FRENCH) saying that they cannot accept that when they have Presidents being elected on fraudulent basis the European Union policy continues business as usual as if nothing has happened; it is unthinkable and it is a disaster when elected persons based on democracy do not have legitimacy
||José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra, Member of the EP, (in SPANISH) saying that it is true that if you look at the election observation missions (EOMs), it is a successful story; they have increased the visibility and prestige of the European institutions and reinforce their image abroad; it is worth to say that under the mandate of Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Member of the EC in charge of External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, the EU has become the world's leader in EOMs thanks to the approach and leadership and the methodology they have followed
||Janez Lenarčič, Slovenian State Secretary for European Affairs and President in office of the Council, (in SLOVENIAN) saying that he would like to welcome the report by Véronique de Keyser and José Ignacio Salafranca Sánchez-Neyra on the EU election observation missions; EOMs are a central part of Europe's policy to promote democracy and democratic elections in various parts of the world and indeed in democracy building developing democratic institutions
||Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Member of the EC in charge of External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, (in ENGLISH) saying that she agrees that the EU election observation cannot be a stand alone policy but must be part of a broader human rights and democracy support strategy; there is a need for enhancing political and technical follow up to EU EOMs; they all have to play a role and the Commission will use the forthcoming review of the country strategy papers to device more coherent policy approaches at country level as suggested in the report to ensure that their actions in the field of protection and promotion of human rights, democracy promotion, electoral support and development assistance aiming at improving democratic governments and rule of law are mutually reinforcing
||Cutaways (6 shots)