Doc. 8889

8 November 2000

Situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia

Report

Political Affairs Committee

Rapporteur: Mr Claude Frey, Switzerland, Liberal, Democratic and Reformers’ Group

Summary

The victory of opposition candidate V. Kostunica in the presidential elections in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) on 24 September 2000 put an end to S. Milošević’s regime and paved the way for a transition to democracy.

It is essential to support the new President in his efforts to ensure the FRY’s peaceful transition to democracy and to provide the country with immediate and massive aid, given the grave economic and humanitarian problems that it faces.

The Council of Europe has a privileged role to play in the process of democratic transition. To contribute to this, a regular dialogue with the Federal Parliament should be established. Also the Assembly should invite the Federal Parliament to request special guest status with the Assembly.

The Rapporteur considers that the Assembly should also call on the authorities of the FRY to establish a democratic political regime based on the rule of law and the protection of human rights, including the rights of members of national minorities, take necessary steps to ensure that the elections to the Legislative Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, on 23 December 2000, are free and fair, inform the population of the FRY about the crimes committed by the Milošević regime and to co-operate with the International Criminal Tribunal for former Yugoslavia.

I.       Draft resolution

1.       The Assembly congratulates Mr Vojislav Kostunica on his election as President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (FRY) and fully supports him in his efforts to ensure that the FRY makes a peaceful transition to democracy.

2.       It also congratulates the Yugoslav people on their choice and on their struggle for democracy and freedom, and pays tribute to the democratic forces that have helped to secure President Kostunica’s election.

3.       The Assembly encourages the federal government and parliament formed after the elections of 24 September 2000 to actively contribute to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s democratic development.

4.       The Assembly welcomes the European Union’s decision to lift all the sanctions applied to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia since 1998 with the exception of those provisions directed at S. Milošević and those associated with him.

5. It also welcomes the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s admission to full membership of the Stability Pact for South-East Europe, on 26 October 2000, and membership of the United Nations, on 1 November 2000.

6.       The Assembly encourages the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to fulfil, as soon as possible, the conditions which will permit it to find its place in other international organisations, in particular the Council of Europe and the OSCE.

7.       The Assembly considers that the Council of Europe has a privileged role to play in the process of democratic transition, which is under way in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

8.       To contribute to this, it wishes to establish regular dialogue with the Federal Parliament and therefore invites the Speaker of the Federal Parliament to request special guest status to the Assembly under Rule 59 of its Rules of Procedure.

9.       On the other hand, the Assembly recalls that the holding of free and fair elections, the implementation of democratic reforms throughout the country, the functioning of a democratic political system, respect of the rule of law and the protection of human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to national minorities constitute the key conditions to be fulfilled by the FRY in order that it may, when the time comes, become a full member State of the Council of Europe.

10.       The Assembly is aware of the current frailty of democratic institutions in the FRY and considers that at this stage, these conditions have not yet been fulfilled. Nonetheless, it is determined to work towards democratic change in the FRY in order that it may accede to the Council of Europe as soon as possible.

11.       The Assembly is very preoccupied by the serious economic and humanitarian problems in the FRY and their potential effects on the stability of the country and its institutions; it considers that massive and immediate humanitarian assistance is needed and that the Council of Europe Development Bank should provide emergency aid to the FRY.

12.       The Assembly notes the Serbian authorities’ decision to renew the Legislative Assembly of the Republic of Serbia on 23 December 2000 and calls on all democratic forces to mobilise themselves in order to ensure that the elections in Serbia are free and fair. Their outcome will be decisive to the future of the FRY and its relations with the international community.

13.       With regard to Kosovo, it notes the results of the local elections held on 28 October 2000 which were accepted by the United Nations Interim Administration Mission in Kosovo (UNMIK). On the other hand, it recalls that the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999) on the situation in Kosovo must be fully implemented and the Serb minority should be given full protection.

14.       The Assembly welcomes the decision of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, on 25 October 2000, to instruct the secretariat to “continue the planning of co-operation activities with the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the examination of the possible setting-up of a Council of Europe office in Belgrade, as soon as the new competent authorities are in place, in close co-operation with the relevant international organisations (in particular the European Union, the OSCE and the United Nations) taking into account the projects developed in the framework of the Stability Pact for South-East Europe”.

15.       The Assembly calls on the authorities of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to:

i.       establish a democratic political regime based on the rule of law and the protection of human rights, including the rights of members of national minorities and, in this respect, to strengthen the democratically accountable role of the police and the credible independence of the judiciary;

ii.       take the necessary steps to ensure that the elections to the Legislative Assembly of the Republic of Serbia, on 23 December 2000, are free and fair;

iii.       invite the international community to observe the elections;

iv.       respect the freedom of speech and to amend existing legislation, particularly the Public Information Law passed by the Serbian Parliament on 20 October 1998;

v.       inform the population of the FRY about the crimes committed by the Milošević regime and to co-operate with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in order to reach a solution that will be in the interests of the country and of justice;

vi.       continue dialogue with the authorities in Montenegro, with a view to clarifying the most effective framework for relations between Serbia and Montenegro;

vii.       co-operate with UNMIK in Kosovo, engage in constructive dialogue in the spirit of reconciliation with the elected Albanian leaders there and liberate the Kosovo Albanian political prisoners still held in Serbia;

viii.        investigate the fate of Serbs and the Kosovo Albanians who have disappeared;

ix.       begin a process of reconciliation with neighbouring countries and re-establish relations based on trust and co-operation, in particular by recognising Bosnia and Herzegovina as an independent, sovereign state, by complying fully with the Dayton Peace Agreement and by recognising the existing border with "the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia";

x.       take all necessary measures to clarify the fate of Mr Stambolic, former President of Serbia and former mentor of S. Milošević, who disappeared during the election campaign;

xi.       resolve the issues concerning the succession to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY)  and fulfil, as soon as possible, the necessary conditions for the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to take its place in international organisations as one of the successor states to the SFRY.

16.       The Assembly calls on the authorities concerned to immediately take all appropriate steps to ensure that the Serbs who have left Kosovo can return to their homes and resume a normal life with all garanties provided by rule of law.

II.       Draft recommendation

1.       The Assembly, referring to its Resolution …. (2000) on the situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia recommends that the Committee of Ministers:

i.       invite member states to provide the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia with immediate and massive humanitarian assistance, and urge them to contribute to the stabilisation of the situation there including assistance with the strengthening the democratically accountable role of the police and the credible independence of the judiciary;

ii.       open a Council of Europe office in Belgrade as soon as possible and redefine the Council’s presence in Montenegro and Kosovo;

iii.       adapt its own programme for stability in South-East Europe to reflect the new situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia within the framework of the Stability Pact;

iv.       send a representative to the European Union Balkan Summit in Zagreb on 24 November.

III.       Explanatory memorandum, by the Rapporteur

1.       Introduction

1.       The victory of opposition candidate Vojislav Kostunica in the presidential elections in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia on 24 September 2000 put an end to Slobodan Milošević’s regime and paved the way for a transition to democracy.

2.       On 26 September, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe held a current affairs debate on the elections in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Bureau referred the matter to the Political Affairs Committee with a view to a debate in the Standing Committee on 9 November 2000.

3.       On 26 October 2000, the committee appointed the rapporteur and held an exchange of views on the situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia with two representatives of President Kostunica.

4.       This document presents the situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia since the elections of 24 September and the relations between the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Council of Europe and other international institutions.

2.       The elections of 24 September 2000

A.       Background 

5.       The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia , born of the disintegration of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia (SFRY), comprises, according to the 1992 Constitution, the Republic of Serbia and the Republic of Montenegro.

6.       On 6 July 2000 the federal parliament, dominated by supporters of Slobodan Milošević, adopted, without consulting the legitimate parliamentary representatives of Montenegro and without their being involved, amendments introducing direct elections for the president of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the two Houses of the federal parliament. These amendments also gave Milošević, whose term of office expired in July 2001, the possibility of standing again in the presidential elections.

7.       Two days later the Montenegrin Parliament adopted a “Resolution on the protection of the rights and interests of the Republic of Montenegro” and introduced a de facto moratorium on legal or political decisions taken at federal level without its involvement.

8.       At the end of July, federal parliamentary elections, federal presidential elections and local elections in Serbia were called for 24 September 2000.

9.       Several opposition parties joined together in a coalition of parties of the Democratic Opposition of Serbia (DOS). The coalition appointed Mr Kostunica, president of the Democratic Party of Serbia (DSS), candidate for the post of President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

10.       In Montenegro, President Djukanovic’s party, the Democratic Party of Socialists (DPS), decided to boycott the elections.

11.       During the election campaign, infringements of media freedom, including the imprisonment of journalists and intimidation and violence directed against the opposition, intensified. During this period, Mr Stambolic, former President of Serbia and former mentor of Slobodan Milošević, disappeared.

12.       As the Yugoslav authorities did not give visas to the experts from the Office for Democratic Institutions and Human Rights (ODIHR) to enable them to assess the situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia before the elections, the OSCE did not make plans to send a delegation to observe the elections.

13.       The Council of Europe, the OSCE and the EU stated that, in all likelihood, the elections would not be free and fair.

B.       Elections and the struggle for recognition and consolidation of the opposition’s victory: current situation

14.       At the close of the elections of 24 September, both the coalition in power and the opposition claimed victory. The international community condemned manifest electoral fraud and announced its support for the opposition. On 6 October, following pressure from the public and the invasion of the parliament, the electoral commission finally recognised Mr Vojislav Kostunica’s victory in the presidential elections.

i.       Federal institutions

15.       The powers of the presidency and the federal parliament are limited.

16.       The investiture of Mr Kostunica as President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia took place on 7 October 2000. The President may dissolve the parliament of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia but cannot dissolve the Parliaments of Serbia and Montenegro.

17.       The federal parliament comprises the Chamber of Citizens (138 members elected for four years, 108 seats being reserved for representatives of Serbia and 30 for those of Montenegro) and the Chamber of Republics (40 members, 20 elected by the Serbian Parliament and 20 by the Montenegrin Parliament).

18.       The DOS did not obtain a majority in the federal parliament on the occasion of the elections on 24 September.

19.       The Prime Minister of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, Mr Bulatovic, an ally of former President Milošević and President of the Socialist People’s Party of Montenegro (SNP), resigned on 9 October. Negotiations for the formation of a new Yugoslav federal government were hampered by disagreement over the issue of whether Slobodan Milošević’s Socialist Party should take part. On 4 November, the federal Parliament confirmed a federal government headed by Zoran Zizic (Socialist People’s Party of Montenegro).

20.       According to the constitution, the prime minister must be Montenegrin if the federal president is Serbian.

ii.       Republics making up the Federation

21.       Under President Slobodan Milošević, Serbian institutions were dominated by the parties forming the coalition in power at federal level: the Serbian Socialist Party (SPS), Mr Seselj’s Serbian Radical Party (SRS) and the Yugoslav United Left (JUL), presided over by Slobodan Milošević’s wife, Ms Markovic.

22.       Following negotiations between representatives of the DOS and supporters of Slobodan Milošević, in particular the Prime Minister of Serbia, elections to the Serbian Parliament were called for 23 December 2000.

23.       President Kostunica’s influence over the development of the country as a whole will depend largely on the majority that emerges from these elections.

24.       On 16 October, after a week of bitter negotiations, the President of Serbia, Mr Milutinovic, a loyal follower of Milošević, announced the formation of a transitional government responsible for running Serbia until the December elections, including Slobodan Milošević’s party (SPS), Mr Draskovic’s Serbian Renewal Party (SPO) and the DOS.

25.       This government is headed by a Serbian prime minister from the SPS and two opposition deputy prime ministers. Decisions will be taken by consensus. The four key ministries (interior, information, justice and finance) will be run jointly by the party formerly in power and the opposition.

●       Montenegro

26.       Mr Djukanovic (DPS: Democratic Party of Socialists) was elected President of Montenegro in October 1997. He beat Milošević’s ally and former President, Mr Bulatovic (SNP: Socialist People’s Party of Montenegro). Since his election he has opposed Slobodan Milošević’s policy and has condemned Serbia’s domination within the Federation. He also threatened on several occasions to declare Montenegro independent if its demand for equal status with Serbia in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia was not met.

27.       The new President of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia has announced that he is ready to engage in dialogue with a view to redefining, if necessary, the relations between Montenegro and Serbia.

28.       A Montenegrin delegation reached agreement with Mr Kostunica’s reformers that no final decision on the future of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia would be taken before the parliamentary elections in Serbia on 23 December.

iii.       Kosovo1 

29.       Under the terms of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1244 (1999), Kosovo, which has an Albanian majority, is administered by a United Nations Interim Administration (UNMIK). Resolution 1244 confirms the principle of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s territorial integrity and calls for the introduction of “substantial autonomy and meaningful self-administration for Kosovo”.

30.       The moderate Democratic League of Kosovo (LDK), led by Mr Ibrahim Rugova, won the local elections organised on 28 October by the international community. Serbs in Kosovo boycotted the elections in protest against their community’s lack of security and freedom of movement.

31.       President Kostunica said that the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia could not recognise the results of the local elections and called on the international community to fully implement Resolution 1244. The President said the poll had helped to give legal credibility to a mono-ethnic society.

32.       Nevertheless, the new federal authorities will have to co-operate with the international community in Kosovo, engage in negotiations on Kosovo’s future status and liberate the Kosovo Albanian prisoners still held in Serbia. According to Human Rights Watch, some 650 Albanian political prisoners from Kosovo were still in prison in Serbia on 14 October 2000. In this respect, the rapporteur welcomes the release on 1 November of Ms Flora Brovina, President of the Women’s League in Kosovo (who was sentenced in November 1999 to 12 years in prison for “hostile activities” and terrorism), and some eleven other Kosovo Albanian prisoners.

3.       Relations between the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Council of Europe

A.       Committee of Ministers

33.       An application for membership of the Council of Europe was lodged in February 1990 by the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. On 8 October 1991 the Committee of Ministers decided to “suspend its co-operation with the Yugoslav authorities, whilst reminding all bodies concerned that, when the time came, it would maintain at their disposal its experience in the legal field and constitutional fields, especially concerning minorities, and that it remained available if an assistance mechanism was created”. In September 1992 it noted that “for the purpose of the Council of Europe conventions and agreements to which it was a party, the ‘Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’ had ceased to exist”.

34.       The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia considered that it did not need to submit a new membership application on the grounds that, contrary to the attitude taken by the international community, the Federal republic of Yugoslavia was the only successor state to the former Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and should therefore be entitled to benefit from the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s status at the Council of Europe.

35.       On 18 March 1998 it submitted an application for membership. The Committee of Ministers took no action on the application, which was not, therefore, forwarded to the Assembly. In September 1998, in the reply to the Assembly’s recommendations on the situation in theFederal Republic of Yugoslavia and the crisis in Kosovo,2 the Committee of Ministers stated that “the lack of seriousness and credibility of the Government of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s application for membership of the Organisation had led to suspension of discussion of this issue. A radical change of policy by Belgrade would be needed before the application could be considered.”

36.       Following the election of President Kostunica, the Committee of Ministers considered possibilities for co-operation with the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, including the possibility of setting up a secretariat office in Belgrade, and took note of the Secretary General’s intention to send a delegation to Belgrade to discuss short-term co-operation possibilities. The delegation visited the country from 18 to 20 October 2000.

37.       President Kostunica has been invited by the Committee of Ministers to attend an exchange of views in Strasbourg on 9 November 2000.

38.       He has also been invited by the Secretary General to an informal meeting, which will take place the day before in his residence.

B.       Parliamentary Assembly

39.       The Federal Assembly of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia obtained special guest status with the Assembly in June 1989. This status was withdrawn by the Bureau on 30 June 1992.

40.       In March 1998 the President of the Assembly and the chairs of the political groups went to Belgrade and Pristina.

41.       Since January 1998 the Assembly has held numerous debates on the situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, particularly in connection with the conflict in Kosovo, and its rapporteurs have visited the country on several occasions. The Assembly has made the point that “only democratic reforms implemented throughout the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, the functioning of a democratic political system, the rule of law and the protection of human rights, including the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, can open the way for gradual and conditional integration of the country into the international community, including membership in the Council of Europe”.3

42.       It also recommended on several occasions that a Council of Europe office be set up in Belgrade.

43.       During an exchange of views with the Political Affairs Committee on 26 October, President Kostunica’s foreign policy adviser, Mr Jevremovic, said the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia needed time to advance towards democracy and stability, and the road was not an easy one. He also spoke of the country’s economic problems and called for additional assistance.

44.       President Kostunica was invited by the President of the Assembly to address the Standing Committee on 9 November on the occasion of the debate on the situation in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

45.       It should be remembered that special guest status may be granted to “national parliaments of European non-member states which have signed the Helsinki Final Act of 1 August 1975 and the Charter of Paris for a New Europe of 21 November 1990; accepted the other instruments adopted at the OSCE conferences; and signed and ratified the two United Nations Covenants of 16 December 1966 on Civil and Political Rights and on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights” (see Rule 59 of the Assembly’s Rules of Procedure, reproduced in Appendix 1).

46.       The Assembly should encourage the authorities of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to establish normal relations between the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the Council of Europe, in particular by inviting the federal parliament to request the special guest status to the Parliamentary Assembly.

4.       Relations with other international organisations

A.       United Nations

47.       In 1992 the United Nations (UN) decided that each state born of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia should submit a separate membership application to the United Nations. The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia did not submit such an application. The United Nations has never recognised it as the only successor state to the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, and in 1992 the United Nations General Assembly decided to suspend the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s participation in its proceedings.

48.       The United Nations Security Council introduced sanctions against the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia in May 1992 and lifted them in October 1996. In response to the violence in Kosovo, new sanctions were introduced in March 1998, in particular an arms embargo. The lifting of the embargo will necessitate a further Security Council decision.

49.       Following Mr Kostunica’s election, the United Nations Secretary General, Kofi Annan, encouraged the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia to apply to join the UN. On 1 November 2000, the United Nations General Assembly adopted a Security Council Resolution recommending the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s admission to the UN.

50.       The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s relations with the international community will also depend on what attitude the new President takes towards Kosovo and the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia set up by the United Nations.

51.       The rapporteur considers that the authorities in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia should inform the public there about the crimes committed by the Milošević regime and co-operate with the International Criminal Tribunal for the Former Yugoslavia in order to reach a solution that will be in the interests of the country and of justice.

B.       OSCE

52.       The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s participation was suspended in July 1992.

53.       The special representative for Southeastern Europe of the current OSCE presidency, Ambassador Albert Rohan, visited the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia from 6 to 8 October 2000. He met President Kostunica, among others, and referred to the possibility of normalising relations between the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the OSCE.

54.       The OSCE recalled that the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia would have to apply for membership as one of the successor states of the Socialist Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and not as its sole successor.

55.       The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia may join the OSCE only with the agreement of all the organisation’s members.

C.       European Union (EU)

56.       Following Mr Kostunica’s election, the EU decided to lift all the sanctions that had been imposed on the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia since 1998 (in particular the oil embargo), with the exception of provisions concerning Milošević and people associated with him. The decisions to lift the oil embargo and the air embargo were immediately adopted. The EU also decided to step up economic and financial co-operation with the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and to suggest that it take part in the stabilisation and association process launched in 1999.

57.       President Kostunica was invited to the European Union’s informal summit in Biarritz on 13 and 14 October. There he acknowledged an obligation to co-operate with the International Criminal Tribunal and undertook to hold two separate referenda in Serbia and Montenegro on their desire to remain united in a single federation, whose name might be changed. For its part, the European Union granted aid of € 200 million to the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia.

58.       An EU Balkan Summit will be held in Zagreb on 24 November 2000.

D.       Stability Pact

59.       Following President Kostunica’s election, the EU asked the Pact co-ordinator, Mr Hombach, to submit proposals to it concerning the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s participation.

60.       On 26 October 2000, the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia became a member of the Stability Pact for South-East Europe.

5.       Conclusions

61.       President Kostunica symbolises a change of political regime in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. Nevertheless, this change remains fragile as long as Serbia has not also chosen democracy. The outcome of the Serbian Legislative Assembly elections, on 23 December 2000, will thus be decisive for the future of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and its relations with the international community.

62.       It is essential to support President Kostunica in his efforts to ensure the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia’s peaceful transition to democracy and to provide the country with immediate and massive aid, given the grave economic and humanitarian problems that it faces.

Appendix 1

Rule 59 of the Assembly’s Rules of Procedure: Special Guests

59.1.       The Bureau may grant special guest status to national Parliaments of European non-member states which have signed the Helsinki Final Act of 1 August 1975 and the Charter of Paris for a New Europe of 21 November 1990; accepted the other instruments adopted at the OSCE conferences; and signed and ratified the two United Nations Covenants of 16 December 1966 on Civil and Political Rights and on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights. 4

59.2.       Any formal request for special guest status shall be addressed to the President of the Parliamentary Assembly by the president of the parliament concerned.

59.3.       If the Bureau, having consulted the Political Affairs Committee, approves such a request, the President of the Parliamentary Assembly shall invite the parliament concerned to assume special guest status.

59.4.       The number of members of a special guest delegation, which shall not exceed eighteen, shall be the same (without substitutes) as the number of seats likely to be appropriate were the special guest state to become a full member of the Council of Europe. This number shall be fixed by the Bureau, on the proposal of the Political Affairs Committee.

59.5.       In so far as the size of its delegation allows, a parliament with special guest status shall appoint members so as to ensure a fair representation of the political parties or groups in that parliament.

59.6.       The credentials of members of special guest delegations shall be sent to the President of the Parliamentary Assembly if possible not less than one week before the opening of the session. These credentials shall be submitted to the Parliamentary Assembly for ratification at the same time as those of Representatives and Substitutes.5 Credentials of members of special guest delegations may be contested on stated grounds based on paragraph 1 above. Contested credentials shall be referred without debate to a joint meeting of the Political Affairs Committee and the Committee on Rules of Procedure and Immunities, presided over by the Chairperson of the Committee on Rules of Procedure and Immunities. These committees shall report to the Bureau as soon as possible.

59.7.       Members of special guest delegations may sit in the Assembly but without the right to vote. They shall have the right to speak with the authorisation of the President of the Assembly.6

59.8.       Members of special guest delegations may attend committee meetings as provided in Rule 47.5.

59.9.       The Political Affairs Committee or at least twenty members may request of the President that special guest status be suspended or withdrawn. The President shall immediately inform the Bureau of any such request. If the request was not made by the Political Affairs Committee, the President shall forthwith seek that committee’s opinion which shall forward it to the Bureau.

59.10.       The members of the Bureau shall be informed of the consideration of such a matter at least two weeks before the meeting of the Bureau at which it will take place. The decision of the Bureau shall be taken by a two-thirds majority.

59.11.       Where special guest status has been withdrawn, the parliament concerned shall make a further formal request if it wishes to assume this status again. Suspension of special guest status may be lifted by the Bureau deciding by a two-thirds majority if it considers that the conditions having led to the suspension no longer exist.

 

Reporting committee: Political Affairs Committee

Reference to committee : Bureau’s decision of 29/09/00

Draft resolution and draft recommendation unanimously adopted by the committee on 8 November 2000

Members of the committee: Mr Davis (Chairman), Mrs Ojuland (Vice-Chairperson), Mr Toshev (Vice-Chairman), MM Arzilli, Atkinson, Mrs Bakoyianni, MM. Bársony, Behrendt, Bergqvist, Björck, Blaauw, Bühler, Clerfayt, Daly, Demetriou, Derycke, Dokle, Dreyfus-Schmidt, Mrs Durrieu, Mr Evangelisti, Mrs Feric-Vac, Mr Frey, Mrs Fyfe (alternate : Mr Rapson), MM. Gjellerod, Glesener, Gligoroski, Gross, Gül, Iwinski, Mrs Kautto, MM Kirilov, Kotsonis, Krzaklewski (alternate : Mr Adamczyk), Kuzmickas, Lupu (alternate : Mr Kelemen), Martinez Casan, Medeiros Ferreira, Meier, Mota Amaral, Mutman, Nedelciuc, Mrs Nemcova, MM. Neuwirth (alternate : Mr Lemoine), Oliynyk, Pahor, Palmitjavila Ribo, Prusak, de Puig, Mrs Ragnarsdottir, MM Rogozin, Saakashvili, Schieder, Schloten, Selva, Sinka, Spindelegger, Mrs Squarcialupi, Mrs Stanoiu, Mrs Stepová, MM Surjan, Thoresen (alternate : Mr Simonsen), Timmermans (alternate : Mr van der Linden), Vella, Weiss, Ziuganov (alternate : Mr Zhirinovsky), N…….. (alternate: Mr Manchulenko).

N.B. The names of the members of the committee who took part in the meeting are printed in italics

Secretaries of the committee: Mr Perin, Mrs Ruotanen, Mr Sich, Mrs Hügel-Maffucci


1        A motion for a recommendation on the future political status of Kosovo was referred back to the Political Affairs Committee on 7 April 2000, so that the matter could be dealt with in a separate report (Doc. 8708).

2        Reply to Parliamentary Assembly Recommendations 1368 (1998) and 1376 (1998) on the latest developments in the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia and the situation in Kosovo.

3

4        This text covers all procedures by which a state has expressed its consent to be bound by the two UN Covenants (for example, accession, notification of succession …). Furthermore, this paragraph refers to the OSCE documents and the United Nations Human Rights Covenants and not to the European Convention on Human Rights, because the latter is not open to signature by states not members of the Council of Europe; whereas all sovereign states are normally members of the United Nations and can thus accede to the United Nations Covenants and can also become participants in the OSCE if they are situated in the OSCE area.

5        On 28 February 1994 the Bureau approved an opinion of the Committee on Rules of Procedure and Immunities relating to the duration of the term of office of special guests, according to which Article 25 of the Council of Europe’s Statute shall apply, by analogy, to special guests (see progress report of the Bureau and the Standing Committee, Doc. 7038).

6        See also Rule 35.