IN THE SPOTLIGHT
Civil Society Contributions to Human Rights and Reform Agenda
On 8-9 June the Eastern Partnership Civil Society Forum (EaP CSF) organised the advocacy conference “Civil Society Contributions to Human Rights and Reform Agenda” aiming at engaging in dialogue with EU decision-makers and human rights organisations.
The conference explored the areas of vital interest to strengthening democracy, human rights and stability in the region, looking at the civil society contribution to the reform agenda in the areas of human rights, security, media freedom, visa facilitation and women’s leadership. A high level closing panel engaged with the participants on the road after Riga Summit and focus of the future reviewed Eastern dimension of the European Neighbourhood Policy.
The conference was opened by Gerhard Schumann-Hitzler, Director for Neighbourhood East at DG NEAR, and the Coordinators of the EaP CSF Working Group 1 “Democracy, Human Rights, Good Governance and Stability” Krzysztof Bobinski and Volodymyr Kuprii.
On 8 June the panels “Human Rights in the Eastern Partnership countries: Challenges and Focus Areas”, “Women Leading Change in Eastern Partner Countries’’ and “Progress on Reforms in Eastern Partnership’’ included representatives of human rights organisations and experts from DG NEAR, including Peter Balas, Head of Support Group for Ukraine, and Emma Sandahl, Expert on Gender.
On 9 June at the panel “A Stronger Eastern Partnership: Conflict and Security Aspects” Richard Tibbels, Head of Division “Eastern Partnership, Regional Cooperation and OSCE” presented the update on the EaP Platform 1 activities. During the session “Media Freedom and Combating Propaganda in EaP Countries” the monitoring report on messages of Russian TV was presented.
Gunnar Wiegand, Director for Russia, Eastern Partnership, Central Asia, Regional Cooperation and OSCE, from EEAS took part in the high level closing panel on the Way Forward after Riga: Debate with Policy-Makers together with the EaP CSF Steering Committee members.
Please see the event agenda attached.