On the European and World Day against the Death Penalty, the Council of Europe and the European Union (EU) reiterate their strong opposition to capital punishment in all circumstances and for all cases. The death penalty is an affront to human dignity. It constitutes cruel, inhuman and degrading treatment and is contrary to the right to life. The death penalty has no established deterrent effect and it makes judicial errors irreversible.
Five months after the outbreak of social protests in Nicaragua, the situation in the country remains of serious concern to the European Union and its Member States. Basic principles of democracy, accountability and rule of law continue to be severely undermined by the authorities' repression, which creates a climate of fear and mistrust. The national dialogue with the aim of reaching political solutions to these problems is now stalled.
The decision by the Nicaragua government to terminate the presence of the mission of the Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) goes against the aim of full accountability for human rights violations and serving justice to the victims of violence.
We expect the authorities to seriously consider the findings of the report issued by the OHCHR and take urgent action to implement the report's recommendations, in particular the dismantling and disarming of pro-government groups, halting all unlawful arrests and release all those who have been arbitrarily detained.
On the International Day for the World’s Indigenous Peoples, we celebrate the contributions of indigenous peoples to the diversity and richness of civilizations and cultures and indeed to our common heritage. It is also a day where we take stock of the many achievements in the recognition and realisation of their rights and identify the actions that the world community still needs to take, so that human rights are universally applied without any discrimination.
Ministers of Foreign Affairs from the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC) and from the European Union are in Brussels to discuss common priorities and challenges. "Building bridges and strengthening our partnership to face global challenges" is the theme of the meeting.
On the occasion of the Day of International Criminal Justice the European Union reaffirms its commitment to the fight against impunity for the most serious crimes and violations of international humanitarian law.
The European Union and Latin America and the Caribbean enjoy privileged relations and are natural partners, linked by strong historical, cultural and economic ties. They share a strategic bi-regional partnership, which was launched in 1999 and stepped up significantly in the recent years. The two regions co-operate closely at international level across a broad range of issues and maintain an intensive political dialogue at all levels.