Extracts from the report by Hélène Flautre, Member of the EP, on the evaluation of EU sanctions as part of the EU's actions and policies in the area of human rights, with the participation of Benita Ferrero-Waldner
End production: 03/09/2008 First transmission: 03/09/2008
On 3 September 2008, in plenary session, the Members of the EP debated on the report by Hélène Flautre, Member of the EP, on the evaluation of EU sanctions as part of the EU's actions and policies in the area of human rights.
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
|| Hélène Flautre, Member of the EP, (in FRENCH) saying that the objective should be to bring about a change in the conduct of the bodies targeted, or countries targeted; it is not punitive, it is not intended to be a criminal code;
saying that the objective of the report is trying to aim at a more transparent and efficient European sanctions policy which is thereby more credible;
saying that they look back at the measures put in place after the Tiananmen Square massacre but they have to say that the sanctions have not brought back any effect; very often the type of sanctions used will depend on other concerns such as geopolitical interests and the particular climate of the day;
saying that she proposes the creation of a network of independent experts to work as well as they can; it is not a matter of distracting from the Commission's power in any way, shape or form; it is to try to find how they can best use the instruments which are available too;
saying that all sanctions against a country must go hand in hand with a visible support and she is talking there about political support, a very concrete support to populations on the spot; that is an essential part of this report; they would also take the view that any irreversible attack against the environment is a reason for bringing in sanctions;
|| Jean-Pierre Jouyet, French Minister of State to the Minister of Foreign and European Affairs, with responsibility for European Affairs, (in FRENCH) saying that sanctions must be part of an integrated global approach of the country including political dialogue, incentives and also other instruments of external policy; he is delighted that the Council's view converges with the report, whereby they wish all instruments and measures available including sanctions and restrictive measures should be used and deployed in a flexible manner;
saying that they take note of the judgment of the court of justice with regard to a decision taken by the UN Security Council because there was no news of acknowledged of grounds for certain organisations being on a black list; the Council is not being banned from taking new measures to freeze funds by the court as long as the people concerned can have information about the reasons why they are being targeted by the sanctions;
|| Benita Ferrero-Waldner, Member of the EC in charge of External Relations and European Neighbourhood Policy, (in FRENCH) saying that the systematic and unilateral use or automatic use of sanctions against any country which violates human rights principles does not seem to be desirable;
saying that sanctions are an instrument which is not designed to replace judicial procedures against those who are guilty of human rights infringements; that is up to the courts to deal with and they are also talking there of the international criminal tribunal;
|| Renate Weber, Member of the EP, (in ENGLISH) saying that to uphold credibility and avoid the accusation of double standards, the EU has to be able to justify the adoption or non adoption of sanctions based primarily on human rights grounds and arguments of effectiveness; because it is crucial that, by imposing sanctions, the EU reveals its strength and not its weaknesses
|| Cutaways (7 shots)