Offener Brief: Den Euro­pa­rat retten

Mit der Anne­xion der Krim und dem uner­klär­ten Krieg in der Ost­ukraine hat die rus­si­sche Führung die Prin­zi­pien der euro­päi­schen Frie­dens­ord­nung mit Füßen getre­ten. Dar­auf­hin wurden Russ­land die Stimm­rechte in der Par­la­men­ta­ri­schen Ver­samm­lung des Euro­pa­rats ent­zo­gen. Das ist eine Frage der Selbst­ach­tung dieses Gre­mi­ums, das die Ein­hal­tung der Men­schen­rechte, den gegen­sei­ti­gen Gewalt­ver­zicht und die gleiche Sou­ve­rä­ni­tät aller euro­päi­schen Staaten gewähr­leis­ten soll. Jetzt ver­sucht der Kreml im Verein mit seinen poli­ti­schen Freun­den eine Auf­he­bung dieser Sank­tion zu errei­chen, ohne seine Politik im min­des­ten zu ändern. Damit würde der Euro­pa­rat seine nor­ma­ti­ven Grund­la­gen auf­ge­ben.  Dagegen richtet sich der fol­gende Offene Brief von Per­so­nen des öffent­li­chen Lebens aus ganz Europa.

Open Letter

We, the under­si­gned, are stron­gly con­cer­ned about the pos­si­ble demise of the Council of Europe, which can take place very soon.

In response to Russia’s illegal annex­a­tion of the Crimea and mili­tary aggres­sion in Eastern Ukraine the Council of Europe sus­pen­ded the voting rights of the Russian dele­ga­tion. In its turn, Russia has turned to black­mail, having sus­pen­ded mem­bers­hip fees to the Council of Europe and boy­cot­ting par­ti­ci­pa­tion in the Par­lia­men­tary Assembly.

In order to tri­um­phantly return to the PACE in January next year without imple­men­ting demands con­tai­ned in a number of PACE reso­lu­ti­ons, Russia and its sup­por­ters decided to act by the principle: if you can not change the policy of the Council of Europe, change its rules. If changes to the current sanc­tions rules are made, it will be vir­tually impos­si­ble to apply sanc­tions in the future AGAINST ANY MEMBER STATE.

Such changes, resul­ting in the uncon­di­tio­nal return of Russia to PACE, will have the fol­lowing nega­tive impact on the Council of Europe and situa­tion with human rights in Europe:

1) by allowing Russia to succeed in black­mai­ling, the CoE will com­pro­mise and dis­credit itself. A weak Council of Europe will lose its aut­ho­rity and influ­ence in those parts of Europe where it is needed the most;

2) without the capa­city to apply sanc­tions, the Par­lia­men­tary Assem­bly of the Council of Europe will become a tooth­less orga­niz­a­tion, strip­ping itself of the only tool which could moti­vate an offen­der of the CoE’s decla­red values – demo­cracy, human rights and rule of law – to correct its policies;

3) it could trigger a full-scale crisis in the organization.

We call upon the ruling elites of all CoE Member States not to allow the demise of the orga­niz­a­tion. History will judge harshly those who give in to black­mail from unde­mo­cra­tic socie­ties where the rule of force is above the rule of law.

Signed by:
Toomas Hendrik Ilves, fourth pre­si­dent of Estonia (2006–2016)
Petras Aušt­re­vičius, Member of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Lithuania
Eit­vy­das Bajaru­nas, Ambassa­dor-at-Large for Hybrid threats, Lit­hua­nian MFA,
Andrius Kubi­lius, Member of Par­lia­ment, Prime Minis­ter of Lit­hua­nia (1999–2000, 2008–2012)
Beatriz Becerra, Member of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, vice-chair of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment Sub­com­mit­tee on Human Rights, Spain
Rebecca Harms, Member of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Germany
Anna Maria, Corazza Bildt, Member of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Sweden
Ana Gomes, Member of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Portugal
Fran­tišek Kopřiva, Deputy, Czech Pirate Party, Repre­sen­ta­tive to PACE, Czech Republic
Jan Lipavsky, Member of the Par­lia­ment, Chamber of Depu­ties, Czech Republic
Werner Schulz, former MP and MEP, Germany
Hanne Seve­rin­sen, Danish Hel­sinki Com­mit­tee, Former MP and PACE, Denmark
Marie­luise Beck, Former Bun­des­tag Member, Germany
Danylo Lub­kivsky, Former Deputy Foreign Minis­ter, Ukraine
Markus Meckel, Former Foreign Minis­ter of the GDR; Vors. Stif­tungs­rat Bun­des­stif­tung Auf­ar­bei­tung, Germany
Paweł Kowal, Former member of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Poland

Also signed by:
Sonja Adel­heid, member, Bündnis 90/​die Grünen, Germany
Hannes Adomeit, Senior fellow, Insti­tute for Secu­rity Policy, UKIEL, Germany
Willem Alders­hoff, former head of unit, Euro­pean Com­mis­sion, Analyst inter­na­tio­nal affairs, Belgium
Jes­sikka Aro, Jour­na­list, Finland
Anders Åslund, Senior Fellow, Atlan­tic Council, Swedish citizen, resi­dent in the USA
Dalia Bank­aus­kaite, Head of the Media program at the Vilnius Insti­tute for policy ana­ly­sis, Lithuania
Kamil Basaj, Info Ops Project Manager, CEO at @Disinfo_Digest, Poland
Steven Block­mans, Senior rese­arch fellow, CEPS, Belgium
Olaf Boehnke, Advisor, Alli­ance of Demo­cra­cies, Germany
Tim Bohse, Poli­ti­cal Sci­en­tist, Germany
Simon Bracey-Lane, Rese­arch Fellow, Insti­tute for Sta­te­craft, UK
Alek­san­dar Brezar, Editor, Natio­nal RTV of Bosnia and Her­ze­go­vina (BHRT), Bosnia and Herzegovina
Pascal Bruck­ner, phi­lo­so­pher, France
Simas Čelutka, Head of Euro­pean Secu­rity Pro­gramme at Vilnius Insti­tute for Policy Ana­ly­sis, Lithuania
Iulian Chifu, Pro­fes­sor, rese­ar­cher; Con­flict Pre­ven­tion and Early Warning Center Bucha­rest, Romania
Carmen Claudín, Asso­ciate senior rese­ar­cher CIDOB, Spain
Evan O’Con­nell, Euro­pean Affairs com­men­ta­tor, France
Halyna Coynash, Kharkiv Human Rights Group, Ukraine
Eugene Czolij, Ukrai­nian World Con­gress, Pre­si­dent, Canada
Harol­das Daublys, Head of Lit­hua­nian Riflemen’s Union’s support group for Ukraine, Lithuania
Danilo Elia Rai, Public broad­cas­ter of Italy /​ Jour­na­list, Italy
Urve Eslas, Adjunct fellow, CEPA, Estonia
Yevhen Fed­chenko, co-founder, Ukraine
André Fesiak, Inde­pen­dent Rese­ar­cher, France
Petr Fojtík, Analyst, Czech Pirate Party, Czech Republic
Ralf Fuecks, Center for Liberal Moder­nity, Direc­tor, Germany
Anna Garmash, Head of “Ukraine Action” (NGO), France
Alyona Get­man­chuk, direc­tor, New Europe Center, Ukraine
Anke Giesen, Lec­tu­rer, Germany
Paul Goble, Former US Government Spe­cia­list on the Non-Russian Peoples of the Formber Soviet Space, USA
George Gra­bo­wicz, Pro­fes­sor, Harvard Uni­ver­sity, United States
Gustav Gressel, Senior Policy Fellow; Euro­pean Council on Foreign Rela­ti­ons, Germany
Iulian Groza, Exe­cu­tive Direc­tor, Insti­tute for Euro­pean Poli­cies and Reforms, Moldova
Pavel Hav­licek, Analyst at Asso­cia­tion for Inter­na­tio­nal Affairs (AMO) in Prague, Czech Republic
Berta Herrero, MEP Advisor, Euro­pean Par­lia­ment, Spain
Maryna Iaro­s­he­vych, Direc­tor of the Ukrai­nian World Con­gress Mission to Inter­na­tio­nal Orga­niz­a­ti­ons, Belgium
Jakub Janda, Direc­tor, Euro­pean Values Think-Tank, Czech Republic
Kornely Kaka­chia, Geor­gian Insti­tute of Poli­tics, Georgia
Julia Kazdo­bina, Head, Ukrai­nian Foun­da­tion for Secu­rity Studies, Ukraine
Tamar Kint­s­urash­vili, Direc­tor, Media Deve­lo­p­ment Foun­da­tion (MDF), Georgia
Lino Kle­ve­s­ath, poli­ti­cal sci­en­tist, Germany
Jana Kobzova, Advisor, Alli­ance of Demo­cra­cies, Belgium
Petr Kolář, Občané pro – Citi­zens for Czech Republic
Peter Koller, The Greens, Germany
Lyud­myla Kozlovska, Pre­si­dent of the Open Dia­lo­gue Foun­da­tion, Belgium
Jacek Kuch­ar­c­zyk, Pre­si­dent, Insti­tute of Public Affairs, Poland
Kos­ti­an­tyn Kvurt, Head of Board at Inter­news Ukraine, Ukraine
Phil­ippe De Lara, assi­stant pro­fes­sor of poli­ti­cal science at Paris 2 uni­ver­sity, France
Marius Lau­ri­na­vicius, Senior expert, Vilnius Insti­tute for Policy Ana­ly­sis, Lithuania
John Lough, Asso­ciate Fellow, Russia & Eurasia Pro­gramme, Chatham House, the United Kingdom
Jeff Lovitt, New Diplo­macy, Chair, UK and Czech Republic
Oleksiy Makuk­hin, Ukraine Crisis Media Center, Ukraine
Jens Mattern, Jour­na­list, Poland
Olek­san­dra Mat­vi­y­chuk, Head of Center for Civil Liber­ties, Ukraine
Daniel Mazur, Project Manager; Charles Uni­ver­sity, Czech Republic
Martin Myciel­ski, Brussels Cor­re­spon­dent, Gazeta Wybor­cza, Belgium
James Nixey, Head, Russia and Eurasia Pro­gramme, Chatham House
Ghia Nodia, Chair­man, Cau­ca­sus Insti­tute for Peace, Demo­cracy and Deve­lo­p­ment (CIPDD), Georgia
Robert van der Noordaa, inves­ti­ga­tive jour­na­list, the Netherlands
Oxana Pach­lovska, Pro­fes­sor, Uni­ver­sity of Rome, Italy–Ukraine
Mas­si­mi­liano Di Pas­quale, Jour­na­list and writer, Italy
Tetiana Pechon­chyk, Human Rights Infor­ma­tion Center, the head of board, Ukraine
Nicolas De Pedro, Senior fellow, Insti­tute for Sta­te­craft, Spain
Chris­tian Pieper, Judge, Germany
Iryna Pieper, Teacher, Germany
Tetiana Push­nova, Inde­pen­dent media con­sul­tant, former Chief Pro­du­cer of inter­na­tio­nal TV Channel UKRAINE TODAY, Ukraine
Antje Rempe lan­guage teacher; pre­si­dent of the Part­ner­schafts­ver­ein Charkiw-Nürn­berg, Germany
Igor Res­hetnyak, Rese­ar­cher, EPFL, Switzerland
Ben Robin­son, Senior Fellow, Insti­tute for Sta­te­craft, UK
Giedrius Saka­l­aus­kas, Res Publica, Lithuania
Olaf Saxegaard, Con­sul­tant, Norway
Alya Shandra, editor, Euro­mai­dan Press, Ukraine
Anton Shek­hovt­sov, Insti­tute for Euro-Atlan­tic Coope­ra­tion, Ukraine
Kris­tian Magnus Skarsvåg, IT con­sul­tant, Norway
Maria Sle­sa­zeck, DRA e.V., Germany
Vla­di­mir Socor, Senior Fellow, James­town Foun­da­tion, USA /​ Germany
Susan Stewart, German Insti­tute for Inter­na­tio­nal and Secu­rity Affairs (SWP), Germany
Alice Stoll­meyer, Exe­cu­tive Direc­tor, Defen­ding Demo­cracy, Belgium
Dovile Sukyte, Policy Analyst, Eastern Europe Studies Centre, Lithuania
Sergiy Sydo­renko, Editor, Euro­pean Pravda, Ukraine
Joanna Szostek, Lec­tu­rer, Uni­ver­sity of Glasgow, United Kingdom
Wolf­gang Templin, Publi­cist, Germany
Lasha Tug­hu­shi, Chair­man of the Geor­gian natio­nal plat­form, EaP Civil Society Forum, Georgia
Rein­hard Weiß­huhn, Robert-Have­mann-Gesell­schaft, Germany
Robert Werner, CEO, Germany
Kata­ryna Wolczuk, Asso­ciate Fellow, Chatham House, United Kingdom
Anna Yavor­ska, Advo­cacy Officer, Open Dia­lo­gue Foun­da­tion, Belgium
Volo­dymyr Yer­mo­lenko, phi­lo­so­pher, jour­na­list, editor at, Ukraine
Borys Zak­ha­rov, Huma­ni­ta­rian Studio Khvylia, Head of the Board, Ukraine
Bjørn Johan Berger, Norway
Anzhela Prazd­nich­nykh, Belgium
Malvin Nygård, Norway
Dr. Ječ­mí­nek Jan Martin, Czech Republic
Anto­nina Demenko, Norway
Even Jahr, Norway
Jaros­lav Froněk, Czech Republic
Ondřej Mora­včík, Czech Republic

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