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Our work at the Council of Europe

The Council of Europe (CoE), based in Strasbourg (France), comprises 47 member states across Europe and is an international organisation independent of the European Union. Founded on 5 May 1949, the CoE seeks to create a common democratic and legal area throughout the continent based on human rights, democracy and the rule of law. All CoE member states are bound by the European Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (ECHR). The European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR) is an international court set up in 1959. Through its binding judgments, it rules on individual or State applications alleging violations of the rights set out in the ECHR.

Amnesty International works with the CoE to raise concerns about human rights violations in member states. We call for the enforcement of existing standards and concrete action to remedy violations and systemic failures to implement human rights . In particular, we inform relevant CoE monitoring bodies and institutions including the CoE Secretary General, the Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) and the Commissioner for Human Rights. Amnesty International also informs the CoE Committee of Ministers when member states fail to abide by the European Court of Human Rights’ judgments. As an Observer to various intergovernmental steering committees and groups, Amnesty International has contributed to the drafting of numerous human rights standards and treaties including the CoE Convention on Violence Against Women and Domestic Violence, the negotiations on the reform of the Court and to the discussions on the accession by the EU to the European Convention of Human Rights. 

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