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Ionel Zamfir

This tag is associated with 33 posts

Human rights in EU trade agreements: The human rights clause and its application [Policy Podcast]

The practice of linking human rights with trade liberalisation has gained ground among many trade partners. Not only the EU, but also other important trade powers, such as the US and Canada, embed human and labour-rights provisions in their new trade agreements. For the EU, this ensues inevitably from the normative vision underlying all of its external policies, as enshrined in the Treaties. Accordingly, the EU has committed to respecting and promoting human rights and democracy through its external action. Continue reading

General elections in Nigeria: EU support for democracy in Africa’s most populous country

Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy and most populous nation, prepares to hold general elections on 16 February 2019 in an environment characterised by a struggling economy and a volatile security situation. After the first peaceful change of power following the 2015 elections, upcoming elections are expected to be tightly contested. Continue reading

The death penalty and the EU’s fight against it

The European Union is strongly opposed to the death penalty in all circumstances, and fighting it is a foremost priority of its external human rights policy. While most countries in the world have abolished capital punishment, death sentences continue to be handed down and carried out in a number of countries. Continue reading

EU policies – Delivering for citizens: Human Rights [Policy Podcast]

In the 70 years since the adoption of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights – the first international document to set common standards of achievement for all states – the pivotal role and moral, legal and political significance of human rights in the international arena have become indisputable. Continue reading

The two first-ever UN global agreements on a common approach to international migration in all its dimensions

These figures are expected to grow for a number of reasons, including population growth, conflicts,increasing connectivity, trade, rising inequality, demographic imbalances and climate change. Continue reading

The 2018 Sakharov Prize

Thirty years since it was first awarded, the European Parliament’s Sakharov Prize for freedom of thought retains all its symbolic meaning, as human rights continue to be embattled in many parts of the world. Continue reading

Fighting child labour: an EU external action priority

As the world celebrates the Universal Children’s Day on 20 November, it is important to remember that many children are still victims of grave abuses. One of these is child labour. Continue reading

EU support for human rights defenders around the world

Twenty years after the UN General Assembly adopted its Declaration on Human Rights Defenders (HRDs) to enhance recognition of their role and encourage states to create a more protective environment, many human rights defenders still face significant threats, and the situation of those working in certain areas has even deteriorated. Continue reading

EU policies – Delivering for citizens: EU support for democracy and peace in the world [Policy Podcast]

Strengthening peace and democracy globally has never been an easy task, however, and today’s geopolitical context poses new challenges. Continue reading

International Day of Democracy, 15 September

As a community of like-minded states, the EU is based on certain fundamental values, such as democracy, human rights and the rule of law. The Union strives to realise these both internally and externally, and they guide all its policies Continue reading

Digital technology in elections: Efficiency versus credibility?

Digital technology brings greater efficiency in many walks of life, and elections are no exception. Online databases hugely facilitate the task of creating and managing accurate and up-to-date electoral rolls. In less developed countries, whose citizens often lack reliable identity documents, biometric technology can help to identify voters, thus preventing fraud in the form of multiple voting. Continue reading

The Rome Statute at 20: The International Criminal Court’s achievements and challenges

Adopted on 17 July 1998, the Rome Statute is the founding treaty of the International Criminal Court (ICC), which was set up to deal with the most serious crimes of international concern – genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes. Continue reading

Towards a global compact on refugees: Strengthening international cooperation to ease the plight of refugees in the world

The recent large-scale flows of refugees and migrants have brought to the world’s attention more forcefully than ever the plight of persons who are forced to flee their homes due to war, insecurity or persecution. Continue reading

The global state of democracy as seen by citizens

On 7 March 2018, the EPRS Members’ Research Service organised a roundtable on the global state of democracy as seen by citizens. The main questions addressed were: do citizens still trust democratic forms of governance? Are they still committed to the model, and can such commitment be boosted? What factors drive public preference for representative democracy over non-democratic options? These are vital questions to answer if there is to be a future for democracy in Europe and in the world. Continue reading

Democracy support in EU external policy

The EU’s policy of external democracy support has gained momentum, particularly after the entry into force of the Lisbon Treaty, which defined democracy as a fundamental principle of the Union, to be enshrined in all policies of external significance. Continue reading

The 2017 Sakharov Prize [Plenary Podcast]

Established in 1988 by the European Parliament, the Sakharov Prize for freedom of thought is awarded each year in December to individuals or organisations for their outstanding achievements in upholding human rights and fundamental freedoms. Continue reading

New priorities for EU–Africa cooperation [Plenary Podcast]

As the EU and Africa prepare to redefine their priorities for cooperation under the framework of the Africa-EU Joint Strategy adopted ten years ago, the European Parliament will debate, during the first November plenary session, a resolution outlining its position on the issue, ahead of the EU-Africa summit scheduled for the end of November. Continue reading

Côte d’Ivoire: bright economic prospects overshadowed by recent instability

Written by Ionel Zamfir, On 14 June 2017, the European Parliament will welcome Côte d’Ivoire’s President, Alassane Ouattara, who will address the Plenary. Alassane Ouatarra will be the first African president to visit the EP during President Antonio Tajani’s term of office. President Tajani, in a speech on the state of the Union delivered in May, the, emphasised that ‘we … Continue reading

António Guterres, United Nations Secretary-General: a strong reformist agenda in difficult times

Written by Ionel Zamfir, The election António Manuel de Oliveira Guterres became the new Secretary-General (SG) of the United Nations on 1 January 2017, following an election process that was unprecedentedly transparent, including public debates with the ten candidates. His election raised much hope that he would be able to tackle the difficult challenges confronting … Continue reading

The future of multilateralism: Crisis or opportunity?

Written by Elena Lazarou, Multilateralism lies at the core of the EU’s identity and of its engagement with the world. Both the 2003 European Security Strategy and the 2016 Global Strategy emphasised the importance of a rules-based global order with multilateralism as its key principle and the United Nations (UN) at its core, and made … Continue reading

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