Head of EU Delegation to the Council of Europe Jari Vilén
Welcome to the website of the European Union Delegation to the Council of Europe.
The EU Delegation in Strasbourg represents the interests of the Union and its 28 Member States in the Council of Europe. The Delegation contributes to establishing a common European position taken together with the Council of Europe and ensures the best possible coordination between the two organisations. In particular, the Head and other members of the delegation regularly participate in meetings of the ministers' deputies and in Council of Europe rapporteur groups.
The European Union and the Council of Europe work together to promote and protect human rights, democratic values and the rule of law. Cooperation between the EU and the Council of Europe is based on complementarity, coherence and added value.
Since the creation of the European Community, cooperation between the two organisations has been significant, and is currently governed by the 2007 Memorandum of Understanding. The signing of the Memorandum gave new impetus to relations between the two organisations, enhancing political and technical cooperation from both a quantitative and a qualitative perspective.
The EU and the Council of Europe base their relations on the principles set out in the European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR), which lies at the heart of both organisations’ activities. Formal and informal talks on the EU’s accession to the ECHR had been taking place within both organisations since the late 1970s. But with the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty (1 December 2009) and of Protocol 14 to the ECHR (1 June 2010), the accession of the EU came a step closer to reality. Negotiations on the EU joining the European Convention on Human Rights concluded successfully. However, in December 2014 the Court of Justice declared that the draft agreement on the EU’s accession to the ECHR was not compatible with EU law. A period of reflection is therefore needed, but joining the convention remains a legal obligation of the EU under the Lisbon Treaty, as well as "a political priority for the [European] Commission”, as stated on 19th April 2016 by the President of the European Commission Jean-Claude Juncker during his speech at the PACE.
This site serves as a gateway to the work of the EU with the Council of Europe and provides information about our activities. It also directs you towards other EU websites, where you can find more detailed information. The European website www.europa.eu is especially informative.
Please contact us if you have any queries, comments or suggestions regarding our website at firstname.lastname@example.org