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112th Plenary Session of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe

06/10/2017 - 07/10/2017

Venice, Scuola Grande di San Giovanni Evangelista. The Venice Commission

- Was informed by Ms Arpine Hovhanissyan, Vice-President of the National Assembly of Armenia, on progress in the implementation of the revised Constitution of Armenia;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Arthur Hovhannisyan, First Deputy Minister of Justice of Armenia, and adopted the opinion on the draft judicial code of Armenia, previously examined by the Sub-Commission on the Judiciary on 5 October 2017;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Evgeni Stoyanov, Deputy Minister of Justice of Bulgaria, and adopted the opinion on the Judicial System Act of Bulgaria, previously examined by the Sub-Commission on the Judiciary on 5 October 2017;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Irakli Kobakhidze, Speaker of the Parliament of Georgia, and with Ms Anna Dolidze, Parliamentary Secretary to the President of Georgia, and adopted the opinion on the draft revised Constitution of Georgia as adopted in the second reading on 23 June 2017;

- Held an exchange of views with with Mr László Palkovics, Minister of State for Education, Ministry of Human Capacities and with Mr Krisztián Kecsmár, Minister of State for EU and international judicial co-operation, Ministry of Justice of Hungary, and endorsed the preliminary opinion on Act XXV of 4 April 2017 on the amendment of Act CCIV of 2011 of Hungary on Tertiary Education;

- Adopted the opinion on the provisions in Emergency Decree Law No. 674 concerning the exercise of local Democracy in Turkey;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Pavlo Pinzenik, First Deputy Chair of the Committee on the Rules of Procedure and Internal Organisation of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine, and adopted the opinion on the Draft Law on amendments to the rules of Procedure and Internal Organisation of the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Oleksiy Filatov, Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration of Ukraine, and adopted the opinion on the draft law on anti-corruption courts and on the draft law on the introduction of mandatory specialisation of judges for corruption and corruption related offences in Ukraine, previously examined by the Sub-Commission on the Judiciary on 5 October 2017;

- Endorsed the preliminary opinion on legal issues raised by the decree issued by President Maduro on 23 May 2017 calling for the election of National Constituent Assembly in Venezuela, previously examined by the Sub-Commission on Latin America on 5 October 2017;

- Adopted the amicus curiae brief for the European Court of Human Rights in the case of Berlusconi v Italy, previously examined by the Sub-Commission on Democratic Institutions on 5 October 2017;

- Adopted the elements for the Committee of Ministers’ reply to Parliamentary Assembly Recommendation 2110(2017) on “the implementation of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights”;

- Endorsed the Compilation of Venice Commission opinions and reports relating to Electoral Dispute Resolution;

- Was informed on follow-up to the Opinion on the proposal by the President of the Republic of Moldova to expand the President's powers to dissolve Parliament; the Joint opinion on the draft laws of the Republic of Moldova on amending and completing certain legislative acts (electoral system for the election of the Parliament) and to the Opinion on the draft Law on the Constitutional Court of Ukraine;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Mohammed Benabdelkader, Minister Delegate to the Head of Government, Responsible for the reform of the Administration and the Civil Service of Morocco, and signed a memorandum of understanding between the Venice Commission and Morocco, relating notably to the organisation of the UniDem-Med Campus for high civil servants of the MENA countries;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Kosuke Yuki, Consul, Consulate General of Japan in Strasbourg, on co-operation with Japan and expressed its gratitude to the Japanese authorities for their recent voluntary contribution;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Luis Almagro, Secretary General, Organisation of American States;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Eduardo Ferrer Mac-Gregor, Judge at the Inter-American Court of Human Rights;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Sumit Bisarya, Senior Project Manager, on co-operation with International IDEA;

- Held an exchange of views with Mr Murray Hunt, Director of the Bingham Centre for the Rule of Law, on future co-operation;

- Was informed on recent constitutional developments in Palestine*, Tunisia and Spain;

- Was informed on the results and conclusions of the 4th Congress of the World Conference on Constitutional Justice which was held in Vilnius on 11-14 September 2017;

- Was informed on the results and conclusions of the Round Table on Foreign Funding of NGOs, co-organised with OSCE/ODIHR and funded by a voluntary contribution of Japan, which took place in Venice on 4 October 2017;

- Was informed on the results and conclusions of the meeting of the Sub-Commission on Latin America held on 5 October 2017;

- Elected the four members of the Committee of wise persons to prepare the elections to the Commission’s offices, to be held in December 2017, as follows: Mr Bartole, Mr Esanu, Ms Hermanns and Ms McMorrow;

- Was informed that a meeting of the Sub-commission on Working methods would be held in December 2017;

- Held an exchange of views with representatives of the Committee of Ministers, the Parliamentary Assembly and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe;

- Confirmed the dates of the next Plenary Sessions as follows 8-9 December 2017; 16-17 March 2018; 22-23 June 2018; 19-20 October 2018 and 14-15 December 2018.

* This designation shall not be construed as recognition of a State of Palestine and is without prejudice to the individual positions of Council of Europe member States on this issue.
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