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114th Plenary session of the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe

16/03/2018 - 17/03/2018

At its 114th plenary session which took place on 16-17 March 2018 in Venice (Italy), the Commission:

• Paid tribute to late Mr Boguslaw Banaszak, member in respect of Poland;

• Was informed of the difficult financial situation following the reduction of the Commission’s budget, thanked Italy for its recent voluntary contribution in addition to its statutory one, and encouraged all member states to also consider making additional contributions to the Commission’s budget;

• Adopted the Opinions on:
- the draft law of Armenia on making amendments to the Law on Freedom of Conscience and on Religious Organisations (jointly with the OSCE/ODIHR);
- the draft Constitutional amendments as adopted in the second reading in December 2017 by the Parliament of Georgia;
- amendments to the electoral legislation of the Republic of Moldova (jointly with the OSCE/ODIHR);
- the draft law on amending and supplementing the Constitution of the Republic of Moldova in respect of the judiciary;
- the draft law on modifications to Article 42 of the Constitution of the Republic of Moldova regarding freedom of association;
- the draft law on the prevention and protection from discrimination of “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”;
- the draft law of Romania revising Government Ordinance 26/2000 on associations and foundations (jointly with the OSCE/ODIHR);
- two draft laws of Ukraine “On introducing changes to the Tax Code to ensure public transparency of the financing of public associations and the use of international technical assistance” and “On introducing changes to some legislative acts to ensure public transparency of information on finance activity of public associations and of the use of international technical assistance” (jointly with the OSCE/ODIHR);

• Held an exchange of views with:
- Ms Tamar Khulordava, Chair of the EU Integration Committee of the Parliament of Georgia,
- Mr Sergiu Sîrbu, Member of Parliament, Democratic Party (PDM) and with Mr Sergiu Ostaf, Director of the Resource Center for Human Rights (CREDO) of the Republic of Moldova,
- Ms Oana Consuela Florea, Member of Parliament of Romania,
- Ms Gjulten Mustafova, State Advisor for Non-discrimination and Human Rights at the Ministry of Labour and Social Policy of “the former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia”,
- Mr Lamberto Zannier, OSCE High Commissioner on National Minorities on possible synergies with the Commission, and with
- the representatives of the Committee of Ministers and the Congress of Local and Regional Authorities of the Council of Europe;

• Adopted the Report on Term limits, Part I: Presidents at the request of the Organization of American States and its Annual Report of activities 2017;

• Took note of the Report on the Identification of electoral irregularities through statistical methods, previously examined by the Council for Democratic Elections on 15 March 2018;

• Was informed on follow up to the opinions on :
- questions related to the appointment of Judges of the Constitutional Court of the Slovak Republic;
- the draft Law of Ukraine on Anti-Corruption Courts and on the draft Law on Amendments to the Law on the Judicial System on the Status of Judges;
- the Amendments to the law of Ukraine on elections regarding the exclusion of candidates from party lists;
- the provisions of the Law of Ukraine on Education of 5 September 2017, which concern the use of the State Language and Minority and other Languages in Education;
- the Rules of Procedure of the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court of the Kyrgyz Republic;
- the draft acts amending the Act on the National Council of the Judiciary, the Act on the Supreme Court and the Act on the organisation of Ordinary Courts of Poland and Opinion on the Act on the Public Prosecutor’s Office of Poland; Opinion on the Act on the Constitutional Tribunal and Opinion on amendments to the Act of 25 June 2015 on the Constitutional Tribunal of Poland; and
- Comments on Recommendation 2110(2017) of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe on the implementation of judgments of the European Court of Human Rights in view of the reply of the Committee of Ministers.

• Was informed on :
- the request for assistance relating to the composition of the Judicial Council of Montenegro;
- progress in the constitutional reform process in Serbia;
- progress of work on the draft report on the recall of Mayors/local elected representatives;
- progress in the preparation of the “Venice Principles” on the protection and promotion of Ombudsman Institutions;
- recent constitutional developments in Kazakhstan, in Palestine and in Turkey ;
- recent and possible future co-operation with Libya;
- the results and conclusions of the International Conference on the “Role of administrative courts in electoral disputes” organised by the Arab Union of Administrative Justice (Cairo, 8-9 January 2018);

• Was informed on the meetings of
- the Bureau of the World Conference on Constitutional Justice (17 March 2018),
- the Council for Democratic Elections (15 March 2018);
- the Sub-Commission on Democratic Institutions (15 March 2018);

• Confirmed the dates of the next Plenary Sessions as follows: 22-23 June 2018; 19-20 October 2018 and 14-15 December 2018 and
• Fixed the dates for the 2019 sessions as follows: 15-16 March 2019; 21-22 June 2019; 11-12 October 2019 and 6-7 December 2019.

Related documents
CDL-PL-PV(2018)001syn  English  19/03/2018 -  Public
114th Plenary Session (Venice, 16-17 March 2018) – Synopsis 
CDL-PL-PV(2018)001syn  French  19/03/2018 -  Public
114e session plénière (Venise, 16-17 mars 2018) - Carnet de bord 
CDL-PL-OJ(2018)001ann  English  02/03/2018 -  Public
114th Plenary Session (Venice, 16-17 March 2018) - Draft Annotated Agenda  
CDL-PL-OJ(2018)001ann  French  02/03/2018 -  Public
114e session plénière (Venise, 16-17 mars 2018) - projet d'ordre du jour annoté 
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