​Imagen de la sede del Consejo de Europa en Estrasburgo, Francia. FOTO COUNCIL OF EUROPE.
History and Activity of the Council of Europe
The Council of Europe was set up after the Second World War with the aim of becoming the custodian of democratic values on the continent. One of the main drivers behind the institution at the time was the then British Prime Minister, Winston Churchill. Nowadays it carries on this work and has become the leading authority in Europe on this issue.

Its main priority is the defence of civil and political rights, although it also concerns itself with defending social and economic rights as contained in the European Social Charter.


The Council of Europe was founded on 5 May 1949 following the signing of its founding charter – the Treaty of London – by Belgium, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom. Shortly after, Ireland, Italy, Denmark, Norway and Sweden also signed up.


One of the first measures taken by the newly-created organisation was the drafting, in 1950, of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. This text enacted, in a binding legal instrument, the rights established two years earlier in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. In 1953, the convention came into force and since then it has been a key element of the organisation’s action.


The polarisation suffered around the world in the mid-20th Century as a result of the Cold War limited, in practice, the actions of the Council of Europe to Western Europe, where citizens lived under democratic regimes.


The growing democratisation that Europe has undergone in recent decades has translated into almost all of the countries on the continent signing up to the highest institution in terms of human and political rights. These new members joined up in two waves: the countries of Southern Europe (Spain, Greece and Portugal) in the 70s and, as from 1989, those in the east, behind the former Iron Curtain. The last State to join was Montenegro in 2007. Belarus, the only country that is not a member, has presented its candidature for membership, which has not been accepted to date.

Twitter@SpainMFA

  • 05 Apr @SpainMFA * “The impact of this crisis is spreading very fast across #Europe. The discussion is about rebooting our economies,… https://t.co/rdaRcthGjT
  • 05 Apr @SpainMFA * 🎥 #COVID19 @AranchaGlezLaya @NOS: “We are seeing that the situation is stabilizing in #Spain. We ask the #EU a Mar… https://t.co/XaWlOR55Eu
  • 05 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @AranchaGlezLaya: Thanks @hans_kluge 4 the support provided by the @WHO 🇪🇸 hugely values your recommendations 2 defeat together #Covid1…
  • 05 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @sanchezcastejon: These are very challenging times, which call for audacious decisions to protect our citizens. It is time for Europe to…
  • 05 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @eu_eeas: No one can face this alone #WeStandTogether #UnitedInDistance https://t.co/ff3pTBZHj6
  • 05 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @JosepBorrellF: Disinformation plays with people’s lives. Disinformation can kill. The @EU_EEAS is at the forefront of the EU’s effort…
  • 04 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @SpainInTheUSA: San Francisco City Hall was illuminated with the colors of the Spanish flag last night, in solidarity with Spain, our pe…
  • 04 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @AranchaGlezLaya: Thank you #Turkey @MevlutCavusoglu 4 authorising the export of Turkish respirators bought by two of our Autonomous Com…
  • 04 Apr @SpainMFA * 🗣🕊 #Spain fully supports the @UN Secretary General’s call for a global ceasefire amid #COVID19 crisis. 🇺🇳🇪🇸 https://t.co/LdiNIaEFMK
  • 04 Apr @SpainMFA * 🇪🇸20th Day of the State of Emergency. 👏For our elders, grandparents, and grandmothers who give us a lesson in comm… https://t.co/qd4TFXVJxG
  • 04 Apr @SpainMFA * 🇪🇸#COVID19: The Government of #Spain, following the recommendations of experts and scientists, will request… https://t.co/Fsb4lIXBD3
  • 04 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @NATO: NATO Allies stand in solidarity in responding to the #COVIDー19 pandemic, and are working together #WeAreNATO Find images of the…
  • 03 Apr @SpainMFA * RT @JosepBorrellF: Misinformation and disinformation on #coronavirus continue to proliferate around the world, creating an infodemic that a…
  • 03 Apr @SpainMFA * Spanish singer-songwriter Santiago Auserón also participates in the #14Dias14Artistas initiative created by… https://t.co/coW6i3249r
  • 03 Apr @SpainMFA * 🇪🇺#COVID19: Minister @AranchaGlezLaya has participated in the informal telematic meeting convened by the High Repre… https://t.co/ckiRMnux0o

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