Vice-president Iliana Iotova Discussed the Fight against the Trampling on Human Rights with the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights

2019-11-28 16:17:00

The talks between Vice-president Iliana Iotova and the Council of Europe Commissioner for Human Rights Dunja Mijatovic, held at 2 Dondukov street, focused on the loss of human rights people have stood up for decades on end.  “I am observing a paradox – the more structures defending human rights are established, the more problems they face. We ourselves frequently give up our rights,” Iliana Iotova said. “There is a drastic retreat from generally accepted democratic values,” Dunja Mijatovic said, for her part. The two highlighted the important role of politicians, international organizations, NGOs and media in the debate on defending human rights.

The Vice-president and the Commissioner for Human Rights talked about the reasons that created this trend. Part of them are related to the economic problems and the lack of an adequate response by the governments to the 2008-2009 crisis, the deficiency of heightened  sensitivity in the states towards the rights of the most vulnerable, the frequent use of rhetoric directed against human rights. “Instead of workable decisions, an opportunity was created for xenophobic and populist rhetoric and radical parties to be on the rise,” the Vice-president said. The increased tendency to categorically repudiate the other was emphasized. 

Iliana Iotova and Dunja Mijatovic were adamant that the European institutions have failed to create a workable policy for tackling the migratory crisis and this is one of the basic reasons for trampling on human rights.

The talks also focused on women’s rights and the violence against them. It was highlighted that after such a great progress achieved in ensuring more rights for women today, words are more frequently heard that women should stay at home, dedicate their lives to raising children and housework. The two shared the opinion that in the fight for women’s rights should involve not only them but also all members of society.

“Violence against women should be paid particular attention, moreover, not only when something irreparable has happened. Apart from decisive measures and uncompromising actions that institutions should take, the heightened sensitivity of the public is necessary,” Iliana Iotova said.

Vice-president Iotova and Commissioner Mijatovic also discussed the post-monitoring dialogue Bulgaria is subject to in the Council of Europe. Iliana Iotova reiterated that monitoring should be stopped because it is an outdated and dysfunctional mechanism. The Vice-president voiced disagreement that in every successive report new criteria should be added. The next report on Bulgaria should be discussed in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in June 2020.


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