Delegation of the European Union to the Council of Europe

EU Statement on Racism and Discrimination

Strasbourg, 08/07/2020 - 12:01, UNIQUE ID: 200708_7
Statements on behalf of the EU

1380bis Meeting of the Committee of Ministers (8 July 2020)

  1. In light of the recent events related to incidents of law enforcement violence, discrimination and intolerance, the European Union would like to reiterate its strong commitment to the fight against racism and all forms of discrimination, intolerance and abuse of power. We should recall that all human rights are universal, indivisible and interrelated. We remain fully committed to fighting any kind of discrimination, which runs against the values and principles on human rights and fundamental freedoms on which the European Union is founded.

 

  1. Recently, Commission President and the Vice President on Values and Transparency condemned all incidents of racism and discrimination on our continent and called on joining forces at all levels to build a more equal, humane and fair Europe. They underlined the need to use all available cooperation tools and networks in implementing existing anti-discrimination legislation and policies on fighting prejudice and combating expressions of racism and xenophobia. It is also essential to remain vigilant against the excessive use of force, and ensure that all such situations are addressed effectively and in full respect for the rule of law and human rights. The use of force should be applied only when it is lawful, necessary and proportionate.

 

  1. In these challenging times, the Council of Europe has to maintain its leading role in the promotion of our values. The European Union strongly reaffirms its continuous support and is determined to work in cooperation with the Secretary General and the Council of Europe, in mobilising and coordinating all the available resources to continue promoting the fight against discrimination. In this spirit, all Member States must protect and respect the fundamental rights and freedoms as enshrined in the European Convention on Human Rights, including article 14 on the enjoyment of protected rights and freedoms without discrimination on any ground, as well as in the European Code of Police Ethics.

 

  1. We firmly believe that there is no place for impunity in a democratic society. Responsibility, accountability and integrity should be our driving principles and the rule of law should ensure that our values and standards protect the most vulnerable when preventing and combating crime. We must continue to uphold human rights for all and it is our main task to ensure that our actions fulfil the meaning of our axiom to live ‘United in diversity', where there is no place for racism or any form of discrimination.

 

The following countries align with this statement:

Albania, Andorra, Armenia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Georgia, Iceland, Lichtenstein, Republic of Moldova, Monaco, Montenegro, North Macedonia, Norway, San Marino, Serbia, Ukraine