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12th Seimas (2016–2020)

Andrius Kubilius, Member of the Seimas: ‘Election of the Secretary General of the Council of Europe presents a wonderful opportunity to launch a strategic debate on strengthening the organisation’

This week, Andrius Kubilius, Member of the Seimas, attended the session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe held in Strasbourg. It was the first visit of Mr Kubilius to the Council of Europe (CoE) in his capacity as a candidate to head the organisation. During the many meetings with representatives and officials of various national delegations, Lithuania’s nominee introduced key priorities of his programme: strengthening of the democratic component of the CoE, continuity of the reform process, and enhancing visibility and moral standing of the CoE.

‘I see a lot of concern over the future of the Council of Europe. I have received much support in that the organisation must inevitably undergo reform in view of both new future challenges and searching for ways to achieve most effective results with the resources at hand. Unfortunately, the organisation faces additional challenges posed by the Russian Federation which boycotts the sittings of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and has unilaterally suspended its contributions to the CoE budget. I know from my own experience that any delay in resolving problems can only exacerbate them further. A new Secretary General will therefore have to demonstrate his strong leadership in proposing solutions to member states of the Council of Europe.

Along with other important meetings, Andrius Kubilius held discussions with Ms Liliane Maury Pasquier, President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe; Mr Thorbjørn Jagland, the outgoing Secretary General; and Mr Joseph Daul, Chairman of the European People’s Party, as well as exchanged views with the representatives of the Nordic and Baltic delegations.

‘Russian officials have rushed ahead by publically announcing that they deemed me the sole unacceptable candidate in the race of four. I think that my supporters will be those who seek genuine strategic debate on ways to strengthen the Council of Europe and look for real solutions. My key objective is to pursue an effective and authoritative organisation that adheres to principles. I am eagerly looking forward to engage in a discussion on concrete proposals with other candidates,’ Mr Kubilius stressed.

At the end of this March, the Committee of Ministers, comprising government representatives of all 47 member states of the Council of Europe, including the Russian Federation, will decide on the shortlist of candidates to be presented to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe. The Committee of Ministers may adopt its decision by consensus and allow the Parliamentary Assembly to make its choice from all four candidatures. In the event of failure to reach a consensus, the Committee of Ministers may vote on all the candidates. In that case, only the candidates, who secured at least two thirds of votes at the Committee of Ministers, may compete for the office.


Public Relations Group of the Homeland Union – Lithuanian Christian Democrat Political Group of the Seimas, tel. +370 85 239 6506, e-mail: [email protected]

   Last updated on 02/06/2019 10:45
   Balys Valatkevičius