Democracy cannot live without free, diverse and independent media. Journalists and media actors across the globe hold states, government officials, corporations and society at large accountable for their actions. But far too many among them face threats and attacks simply for carrying out their work, while the perpetrators of these attacks often act with total impunity.
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.
The European Union and its Member States have progressively put in place a comprehensive external migration
policy and strengthened the work along the Central Mediterranean route. Saving and protecting the lives of
migrants and refugees, breaking the business model of smugglers and traffickers and providing legal pathways,
while addressing the root causes of irregular migration and forced displacement are at the very heart of the EU's policy.
As part of President Juncker's State of the Union proposals earlier this week the European Commission announced a new 'Africa - Europe Alliance for Sustainable Investment and Jobs'. The package builds on the commitments taken during the African Union – European Union Summit of last year in Abidjan where the two continents agreed to strengthen their partnership. The Alliance will lead to the creation of up to 10 million jobs in Africa in the next 5 years alone.