Press release - 975(2010)

International Migrants Day, 18 December 2010

Strasbourg, 16.12.2010 - On the occasion of International Migrants’ Day, Ahmet Davutoğlu, Minister for Foreign Affairs of Turkey and Chairman of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, called on member states to be vigilant in upholding the core values of the Organisation when addressing migration issues. He expressed hope that the important works carried out so far by the Council of Europe on migrants would be reinforced in the period ahead.

“At a time when we witness a resurgence of intolerance and discrimination, with deteriorating social ties, radicalisation and prejudices towards other cultures or faiths, we must recall that migration is a strength and not a threat for Europe. Migrants have multiple valuable contributions to make in our societies and economies.”

In this context, the Chairman signaled the importance of the work of the Group of Eminent persons, recently tasked by the Council of Europe to define a new concept of “living together” in modern European societies.

“Human rights must find their rightful place in the formulation and implementation of migration policies. We must combat racism, discrimination, xenophobia and hate speech against migrants . Such a human rights approach must also actively seek to promote social inclusion and integration which goes beyond simple tolerance of difference.”

Council of Europe Directorate of Communication
Tel: +33 (0)3 88 41 25 60
Fax:+33 (0)3 88 41 39 11