Krassimir Kanev is founder and chairman of the Bulgarian Helsinki Committee. In an opinion piece for “Liberties”, he analyses the role of human rights in the Bulgarian government’s Programme for the Presidency of the Council of the European Union.
In mid-December, the Bulgarian government presented to the National Assembly its Programme for the Presidency of the Council of the European Union. The Programme establishes four priorities: economic growth and social cohesion; European perspective for the Western Balkans; safety and stability in a strong and united Europe; digital economy and skills for the future. None of these priorities is related to human rights. Moreover, the phrases “human rights” and “fundamental rights” are not even used in the Programme. There are no references to the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. In general, it does not show that Bulgaria recognises human rights, which need to be strengthened during its Presidency, as they are one of the fundamental values of the Union.
Upon assuming the presidency of the Council of Europe, which rotates through the member states, each government is responsible for determine the Council’s agenda and setting a work programme during the course of its presidency…/IBNA
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