DOCUMENT OF THE COPENHAGEN MEETING OF THE CONFERENCE ON THE HUMAN DIMENSION OF THE CSCE

The representatives of the participating States of the Conference on

Security and Co-operation in Europe (CSCE), Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria,

Canada, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Finland, France, the German

Democratic Republic, the Federal Republic of Germany, Greece, the Holy

See, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta,

Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino,

Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics,

the United Kingdom, the United States of America and Yugoslavia, met in

Copenhagen from 5 to 29 June 1990, in accordance with the provisions

relating to the Conference on the Human Dimension of the CSCE contained

in the Concluding Document of the Vienna Follow-up Meeting of the CSCE.

The representative of Albania attended the Copenhagen Meeting as

observer.

The first Meeting of the Conference was held in Paris from 30 May to

23 June 1989.

The Copenhagen Meeting was opened and closed by the Minister for

Foreign Affairs of Denmark.

The formal opening of the Copenhagen Meeting was attended by Her

Majesty the Queen of Denmark and His Royal Highness the Prince Consort.

Opening statements were made by Ministers and Deputy Ministers of

the participating States.

At a special meeting of the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the

participating States of the CSCE on 5 June 1990, convened on the invitation

of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Denmark, it was agreed to convene a

Preparatory Committee in Vienna on 10 July 1990 to prepare a Summit

Meeting in Paris of their Heads of State or Government.

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The participating States welcome with great satisfaction the

fundamental political changes that have occurred in Europe since the first

Meeting of the Conference on the Human Dimension of the CSCE in Paris in

1989. They note that the CSCE process has contributed significantly to

bringing about these changes and that these developments in turn have

greatly advanced the implementation of the provisions of the Final Act and of

the other CSCE documents.

They recognize that pluralistic democracy and the rule of law are

essential for ensuring respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms,

the development of human contacts and the resolution of other issues of a

related humanitarian character. They therefore welcome the commitment

expressed by all participating States to the ideals of democracy and political

pluralism as well as their common determination to build democratic societies

based on free elections and the rule of law.

At the Copenhagen Meeting the participating States held a review of

the implementation of their commitments in the field of the human dimension.

They considered that the degree of compliance with the commitments

contained in the relevant provisions of the CSCE documents had shown a

fundamental improvement since the Paris Meeting. They also expressed the

view, however, that further steps are required for the full realization of their

commitments relating to the human dimension.

The participating States express their conviction that full respect for

human rights and fundamental freedoms and the development of societies

based on pluralistic democracy and the rule of law are prerequisites for

progress in setting up the lasting order of peace, security, justice and

co-operation that they seek to establish in Europe. They therefore reaffirm

their commitment to implement fully all provisions of the Final Act and of the

other CSCE documents relating to the human dimension and undertake to

build on the progress they have made.

They recognize that co-operation among themselves, as well as the

active involvement of persons, groups, organizations and institutions, will be

essential to ensure continuing progress towards their shared objectives.

In order to strengthen respect for, and enjoyment of, human rights

and fundamental freedoms, to develop human contacts and to resolve issues of

a related humanitarian character, the participating States agree on the

following:

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I

(1) The participating States express their conviction that the

protection and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms is one

of the basic purposes of government, and reaffirm that the recognition of

these rights and freedoms constitutes the foundation of freedom, justice and

peace.

(2) They are determined to support and advance those principles

of justice which form the basis of the rule of law. They consider that the rule

of law does not mean merely a formal legality which assures regularity and

consistency in the achievement and enforcement of democratic order, but

justice based on the recognition and full acceptance of the supreme value of

the human personality and guaranteed by institutions providing a framework

for its fullest expression.

(3) They reaffirm that democracy is an inherent element of the

rule of law. They recognize the importance of pluralism with regard to

political organizations.

(4) They confirm that they will respect each other’s right freely to

choose and develop, in accordance with international human rights standards,

their political, social, economic and cultural systems. In exercising this right,

they will ensure that their laws, regulations, practices and policies conform

with their obligations under international law and are brought into harmony

with the provisions of the Declaration on Principles and other CSCE

commitments.

(5) They solemnly declare that among those elements of justice

which are essential to the full expression of the inherent dignity and of the

equal and inalienable rights of all human beings are the following:

(5.1) — free elections that will be held at reasonable intervals by

secret ballot or by equivalent free voting procedure, under conditions which

ensure in practice the free expression of the opinion of the electors in the

choice of their representatives;

(5.2) — a form of government that is representative in character, in

which the executive is accountable to the elected legislature or the electorate;

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(5.3) — the duty of the government and public authorities to comply

with the constitution and to act in a manner consistent with law;

(5.4) — a clear separation between the State and political parties; in

particular, political parties will not be merged with the State;

(5.5) — the activity of the government and the administration as

well as that of the judiciary will be exercised in accordance with the system

established by law. Respect for that system must be ensured;

(5.6) — military forces and the police will be under the control of,

and accountable to, the civil authorities;

(5.7) — human rights and fundamental freedoms will be guaranteed

by law and in accordance with their obligations under international law;

(5.8) — legislation, adopted at the end of a public procedure, and

regulations will be published, that being the condition for their applicability.

Those texts will be accessible to everyone;

(5.9) — all persons are equal before the law and are entitled without

any discrimination to the equal protection of the law. In this respect, the law

will prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and

effective protection against discrimination on any ground;

(5.10) — everyone will have an effective means of redress against

administrative decisions, so as to guarantee respect for fundamental rights

and ensure legal integrity;

(5.11) — administrative decisions against a person must be fully

justifiable and must as a rule indicate the usual remedies available;

(5.12) — the independence of judges and the impartial operation of

the public judicial service will be ensured;

(5.13) — the independence of legal practitioners will be recognized

and protected, in particular as regards conditions for recruitment and

practice;

(5.14) — the rules relating to criminal procedure will contain a clear

definition of powers in relation to prosecution and the measures preceding

and accompanying prosecution;

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(5.15) — any person arrested or detained on a criminal charge will

have the right, so that the lawfulness of his arrest or detention can be decided,

to be brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorized by law to

exercise this function;

(5.16) — in the determination of any criminal charge against him, or

of his rights and obligations in a suit at law, everyone will be entitled to a fair

and public hearing by a competent, independent and impartial tribunal

established by law;

(5.17) — any person prosecuted will have the right to defend himself

in person or through prompt legal assistance of his own choosing or, if he does

not have sufficient means to pay for legal assistance, to be given it free when

the interests of justice so require;

(5.18) — no one will be charged with, tried for or convicted of any

criminal offence unless the offence is provided for by a law which defines the

elements of the offence with clarity and precision;

(5.19) — everyone will be presumed innocent until proved guilty

according to law;

(5.20) — considering the important contribution of international

instruments in the field of human rights to the rule of law at a national level,

the participating States reaffirm that they will consider acceding to the

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International

Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and other relevant

international instruments, if they have not yet done so;

(5.21) — in order to supplement domestic remedies and better to

ensure that the participating States respect the international obligations they

have undertaken, the participating States will consider acceding to a regional

or global international convention concerning the protection of human rights,

such as the European Convention on Human Rights or the Optional Protocol

to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which provide for

procedures of individual recourse to international bodies.

(6) The participating States declare that the will of the people,

freely and fairly expressed through periodic and genuine elections, is the basis

of the authority and legitimacy of all government. The participating States

will accordingly respect the right of their citizens to take part in the governing

of their country, either directly or through representatives freely chosen by

them through fair electoral processes. They recognize their responsibility to

defend and protect, in accordance with their laws, their international human

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rights obligations and their international commitments, the democratic order

freely established through the will of the people against the activities of

persons, groups or organizations that engage in or refuse to renounce

terrorism or violence aimed at the overthrow of that order or of that of

another participating State.

(7) To ensure that the will of the people serves as the basis of the

authority of government, the participating States will

(7.1) — hold free elections at reasonable intervals, as established by

law;

(7.2) — permit all seats in at least one chamber of the national

legislature to be freely contested in a popular vote;

(7.3) — guarantee universal and equal suffrage to adult citizens;

(7.4) — ensure that votes are cast by secret ballot or by equivalent

free voting procedure, and that they are counted and reported honestly with

the official results made public;

(7.5) — respect the right of citizens to seek political or public office,

individually or as representatives of political parties or organizations, without

discrimination;

(7.6) — respect the right of individuals and groups to establish, in

full freedom, their own political parties or other political organizations and

provide such political parties and organizations with the necessary legal

guarantees to enable them to compete with each other on a basis of equal

treatment before the law and by the authorities;

(7.7) — ensure that law and public policy work to permit political

campaigning to be conducted in a fair and free atmosphere in which neither

administrative action, violence nor intimidation bars the parties and the

candidates from freely presenting their views and qualifications, or prevents

the voters from learning and discussing them or from casting their vote free of

fear of retribution;

(7.8) — provide that no legal or administrative obstacle stands in the

way of unimpeded access to the media on a non-discriminatory basis for all

political groupings and individuals wishing to participate in the electoral

process;

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(7.9) — ensure that candidates who obtain the necessary number of

votes required by law are duly installed in office and are permitted to remain

in office until their term expires or is otherwise brought to an end in a manner

that is regulated by law in conformity with democratic parliamentary and

constitutional procedures.

(8) The participating States consider that the presence of

observers, both foreign and domestic, can enhance the electoral process for

States in which elections are taking place. They therefore invite observers

from any other CSCE participating States and any appropriate private

institutions and organizations who may wish to do so to observe the course of

their national election proceedings, to the extent permitted by law. They will

also endeavour to facilitate similar access for election proceedings held below

the national level. Such observers will undertake not to interfere in the

electoral proceedings.

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II

(9) The participating States reaffirm that

(9.1) — everyone will have the right to freedom of expression

including the right to communication. This right will include freedom to hold

opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without

interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. The exercise of

this right may be subject only to such restrictions as are prescribed by law

and are consistent with international standards. In particular, no limitation

will be imposed on access to, and use of, means of reproducing documents of

any kind, while respecting, however, rights relating to intellectual property,

including copyright;

(9.2) — everyone will have the right of peaceful assembly and

demonstration. Any restrictions which may be placed on the exercise of these

rights will be prescribed by law and consistent with international standards;

(9.3) — the right of association will be guaranteed. The right to form

and — subject to the general right of a trade union to determine its own

membership — freely to join a trade union will be guaranteed. These rights

will exclude any prior control. Freedom of association for workers, including

the freedom to strike, will be guaranteed, subject to limitations prescribed by

law and consistent with international standards;

(9.4) — everyone will have the right to freedom of thought,

conscience and religion. This right includes freedom to change one’s religion

or belief and freedom to manifest one’s religion or belief, either alone or in

community with others, in public or in private, through worship, teaching,

practice and observance. The exercise of these rights may be subject only to

such restrictions as are prescribed by law and are consistent with

international standards;

(9.5) — they will respect the right of everyone to leave any country,

including his own, and to return to his country, consistent with a State’s

international obligations and CSCE commitments. Restrictions on this right

will have the character of very rare exceptions, will be considered necessary

only if they respond to a specific public need, pursue a legitimate aim and are

proportionate to that aim, and will not be abused or applied in an arbitrary

manner;

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(9.6) — everyone has the right peacefully to enjoy his property

either on his own or in common with others. No one may be deprived of his

property except in the public interest and subject to the conditions provided

for by law and consistent with international commitments and obligations.

(10) In reaffirming their commitment to ensure effectively the rights

of the individual to know and act upon human rights and fundamental

freedoms, and to contribute actively, individually or in association with

others, to their promotion and protection, the participating States express

their commitment to

(10.1) — respect the right of everyone, individually or in association

with others, to seek, receive and impart freely views and information on

human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the rights to disseminate

and publish such views and information;

(10.2) — respect the rights of everyone, individually or in association

with others, to study and discuss the observance of human rights and

fundamental freedoms and to develop and discuss ideas for improved

protection of human rights and better means for ensuring compliance with

international human rights standards;

(10.3) — ensure that individuals are permitted to exercise the right to

association, including the right to form, join and participate effectively in

non-governmental organizations which seek the promotion and protection of

human rights and fundamental freedoms, including trade unions and human

rights monitoring groups;

(10.4) — allow members of such groups and organizations to have

unhindered access to and communication with similar bodies within and

outside their countries and with international organizations, to engage in

exchanges, contacts and co-operation with such groups and organizations and

to solicit, receive and utilize for the purpose of promoting and protecting

human rights and fundamental freedoms voluntary financial contributions

from national and international sources as provided for by law.

(11) The participating States further affirm that, where violations of

human rights and fundamental freedoms are alleged to have occurred, the

effective remedies available include

(11.1) — the right of the individual to seek and receive adequate legal

assistance;

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(11.2) — the right of the individual to seek and receive assistance

from others in defending human rights and fundamental freedoms, and to

assist others in defending human rights and fundamental freedoms;

(11.3) — the right of individuals or groups acting on their behalf to

communicate with international bodies with competence to receive and

consider information concerning allegations of human rights abuses.

(12) The participating States, wishing to ensure greater

transparency in the implementation of the commitments undertaken in the

Vienna Concluding Document under the heading of the human dimension of

the CSCE, decide to accept as a confidence-building measure the presence of

observers sent by participating States and representatives of

non-governmental organizations and other interested persons at proceedings

before courts as provided for in national legislation and international law; it is

understood that proceedings may only be held in camera in the circumstances

prescribed by law and consistent with obligations under international law and

international commitments.

(13) The participating States decide to accord particular attention

to the recognition of the rights of the child, his civil rights and his individual

freedoms, his economic, social and cultural rights, and his right to special

protection against all forms of violence and exploitation. They will consider

acceding to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, if they have not yet

done so, which was opened for signature by States on 26 January 1990. They

will recognize in their domestic legislation the rights of the child as affirmed in

the international agreements to which they are Parties.

(14) The participating States agree to encourage the creation, within

their countries, of conditions for the training of students and trainees from

other participating States, including persons taking vocational and technical

courses. They also agree to promote travel by young people from their

countries for the purpose of obtaining education in other participating States

and to that end to encourage the conclusion, where appropriate, of bilateral

and multilateral agreements between their relevant governmental institutions,

organizations and educational establishments.

(15) The participating States will act in such a way as to facilitate

the transfer of sentenced persons and encourage those participating States

which are not Parties to the Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons,

signed at Strasbourg on 21 November 1983, to consider acceding to the

Convention.

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(16) The participating States

(16.1) — reaffirm their commitment to prohibit torture and other

cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, to take effective

legislative, administrative, judicial and other measures to prevent and punish

such practices, to protect individuals from any psychiatric or other medical

practices that violate human rights and fundamental freedoms and to take

effective measures to prevent and punish such practices;

(16.2) — intend, as a matter of urgency, to consider acceding to the

Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading

Treatment or Punishment, if they have not yet done so, and recognizing the

competences of the Committee against Torture under articles 21 and 22 of the

Convention and withdrawing reservations regarding the competence of the

Committee under article 20;

(16.3) — stress that no exceptional circumstances whatsoever,

whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any

other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture;

(16.4) — will ensure that education and information regarding the

prohibition against torture are fully included in the training of law

enforcement personnel, civil or military, medical personnel, public officials

and other persons who may be involved in the custody, interrogation or

treatment of any individual subjected to any form of arrest, detention or

imprisonment;

(16.5) — will keep under systematic review interrogation rules,

instructions, methods and practices as well as arrangements for the custody

and treatment of persons subjected to any form of arrest, detention or

imprisonment in any territory under their jurisdiction, with a view to

preventing any cases of torture;

(16.6) — will take up with priority for consideration and for

appropriate action, in accordance with the agreed measures and procedures

for the effective implementation of the commitments relating to the human

dimension of the CSCE, any cases of torture and other inhuman or degrading

treatment or punishment made known to them through official channels or

coming from any other reliable source of information;

(16.7) — will act upon the understanding that preserving and

guaranteeing the life and security of any individual subjected to any form of

torture and other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment will be the

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sole criterion in determining the urgency and priorities to be accorded in

taking appropriate remedial action; and, therefore, the consideration of any

cases of torture and other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

within the framework of any other international body or mechanism may not

be invoked as a reason for refraining from consideration and appropriate

action in accordance with the agreed measures and procedures for the

effective implementation of the commitments relating to the human dimension

of the CSCE.

(17) The participating States

(17.1) — recall the commitment undertaken in the Vienna

Concluding Document to keep the question of capital punishment under

consideration and to co-operate within relevant international organizations;

(17.2) — recall, in this context, the adoption by the General Assembly

of the United Nations, on 15 December 1989, of the Second Optional Protocol

to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, aiming at the

abolition of the death penalty;

(17.3) — note the restrictions and safeguards regarding the use of the

death penalty which have been adopted by the international community, in

particular article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political

Rights;

(17.4) — note the provisions of the Sixth Protocol to the European

Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms,

concerning the abolition of the death penalty;

(17.5) — note recent measures taken by a number of participating

States towards the abolition of capital punishment;

(17.6) — note the activities of several non-governmental

organizations on the question of the death penalty;

(17.7) — will exchange information within the framework of the

Conference on the Human Dimension on the question of the abolition of the

death penalty and keep that question under consideration;

(17.8) — will make available to the public information regarding the

use of the death penalty.

(18) The participating States

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(18.1) — note that the United Nations Commission on Human Rights

has recognized the right of everyone to have conscientious objections to

military service;

(18.2) — note recent measures taken by a number of participating

States to permit exemption from compulsory military service on the basis of

conscientious objections;

(18.3) — note the activities of several non-governmental

organizations on the question of conscientious objections to compulsory

military service;

(18.4) — agree to consider introducing, where this has not yet been

done, various forms of alternative service, which are compatible with the

reasons for conscientious objection, such forms of alternative service being in

principle of a non-combatant or civilian nature, in the public interest and of a

non-punitive nature;

(18.5) — will make available to the public information on this issue;

(18.6) — will keep under consideration, within the framework of the

Conference on the Human Dimension, the relevant questions related to the

exemption from compulsory military service, where it exists, of individuals on

the basis of conscientious objections to armed service, and will exchange

information on these questions.

(19) The participating States affirm that freer movement and

contacts among their citizens are important in the context of the protection

and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms. They will ensure

that their policies concerning entry into their territories are fully consistent

with the aims set out in the relevant provisions of the Final Act, the Madrid

Concluding Document and the Vienna Concluding Document. While

reaffirming their determination not to recede from the commitments

contained in CSCE documents, they undertake to implement fully and

improve present commitments in the field of human contacts, including on a

bilateral and multilateral basis. In this context they will

(19.1) — strive to implement the procedures for entry into their

territories, including the issuing of visas and passport and customs control, in

good faith and without unjustified delay. Where necessary, they will shorten

the waiting time for visa decisions, as well as simplify practices and reduce

administrative requirements for visa applications;

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(19.2) — ensure, in dealing with visa applications, that these are

processed as expeditiously as possible in order, inter alia, to take due account

of important family, personal or professional considerations, especially in

cases of an urgent, humanitarian nature;

(19.3) — endeavour, where necessary, to reduce fees charged in

connection with visa applications to the lowest possible level.

(20) The participating States concerned will consult and, where

appropriate, cooperate in dealing with problems that might emerge as a result

of the increased movement of persons.

(21) The participating States recommend the consideration, at the

next CSCE Follow-up Meeting in Helsinki, of the advisability of holding a

meeting of experts on consular matters.

(22) The participating States reaffirm that the protection and

promotion of the rights of migrant workers have their human dimension. In

this context, they

(22.1) — agree that the protection and promotion of the rights of

migrant workers are the concern of all participating States and that as such

they should be addressed within the CSCE process;

(22.2) — reaffirm their commitment to implement fully in their

domestic legislation the rights of migrant workers provided for in

international agreements to which they are parties;

(22.3) — consider that, in future international instruments

concerning the rights of migrant workers, they should take into account the

fact that this issue is of importance for all of them;

(22.4) — express their readiness to examine, at future CSCE

meetings, the relevant aspects of the further promotion of the rights of

migrant workers and their families.

(23) The participating States reaffirm their conviction expressed in

the Vienna Concluding Document that the promotion of economic, social and

cultural rights as well as of civil and political rights is of paramount

importance for human dignity and for the attainment of the legitimate

aspirations of every individual. They also reaffirm their commitment taken in

the Document of the Bonn Conference on Economic Co-operation in Europe

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to the promotion of social justice and the improvement of living and working

conditions. In the context of continuing their efforts with a view to achieving

progressively the full realization of economic, social and cultural rights by all

appropriate means, they will pay special attention to problems in the areas of

employment, housing, social security, health, education and culture.

(24) The participating States will ensure that the exercise of all the

human rights and fundamental freedoms set out above will not be subject to

any restrictions except those which are provided by law and are consistent

with their obligations under international law, in particular the International

Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and with their international

commitments, in particular the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

These restrictions have the character of exceptions. The participating States

will ensure that these restrictions are not abused and are not applied in an

arbitrary manner, but in such a way that the effective exercise of these rights

is ensured.

Any restriction on rights and freedoms must, in a democratic

society, relate to one of the objectives of the applicable law and be strictly

proportionate to the aim of that law.

(25) The participating States confirm that any derogations from

obligations relating to human rights and fundamental freedoms during a state

of public emergency must remain strictly within the limits provided for by

international law, in particular the relevant international instruments by

which they are bound, especially with respect to rights from which there can

be no derogation. They also reaffirm that

(25.1) — measures derogating from such obligations must be taken in

strict conformity with the procedural requirements laid down in those

instruments;

(25.2) — the imposition of a state of public emergency must be

proclaimed officially, publicly, and in accordance with the provisions laid

down by law;

(25.3) — measures derogating from obligations will be limited to the

extent strictly required by the exigencies of the situation;

(25.4) — such measures will not discriminate solely on the grounds of

race, colour, sex, language, religion, social origin or of belonging to a minority.

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III

(26) The participating States recognize that vigorous democracy

depends on the existence as an integral part of national life of democratic

values and practices as well as an extensive range of democratic institutions.

They will therefore encourage, facilitate and, where appropriate, support

practical co-operative endeavours and the sharing of information, ideas and

expertise among themselves and by direct contacts and co-operation between

individuals, groups and organizations in areas including the following:

— constitutional law, reform and development,

— electoral legislation, administration and observation,

— establishment and management of courts and legal systems,

— the development of an impartial and effective public service

where recruitment and advancement are based on a merit system,

— law enforcement,

— local government and decentralization,

— access to information and protection of privacy,

— developing political parties and their role in pluralistic

societies,

— free and independent trade unions,

— co-operative movements,

— developing other forms of free associations and public interest

groups,

— journalism, independent media, and intellectual and cultural

life,

— the teaching of democratic values, institutions and practices in

educational institutions and the fostering of an atmosphere of free enquiry.

Such endeavours may cover the range of co-operation

encompassed in the human dimension of the CSCE, including training,

exchange of information, books and instructional materials, co-operative

programmes and projects, academic and professional exchanges and

conferences, scholarships, research grants, provision of expertise and advice,

business and scientific contacts and programmes.

(27) The participating States will also facilitate the establishment

and strengthening of independent national institutions in the area of human

rights and the rule of law, which may also serve as focal points for

co-ordination and collaboration between such institutions in the participating

States. They propose that co-operation be encouraged between

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parliamentarians from participating States, including through existing

inter-parliamentary associations and, inter alia, through joint commissions,

television debates involving parliamentarians, meetings and round-table

discussions. They will also encourage existing institutions, such as

organizations within the United Nations system and the Council of Europe, to

continue and expand the work they have begun in this area.

(28) The participating States recognize the important expertise of

the Council of Europe in the field of human rights and fundamental freedoms

and agree to consider further ways and means to enable the Council of

Europe to make a contribution to the human dimension of the CSCE. They

agree that the nature of this contribution could be examined further in a

future CSCE forum.

(29) The participating States will consider the idea of convening a

meeting or seminar of experts to review and discuss co-operative measures

designed to promote and sustain viable democratic institutions in

participating States, including comparative studies of legislation in

participating States in the area of human rights and fundamental freedoms,

inter alia drawing upon the experience acquired in this area by the Council of

Europe and the activities of the Commission “Democracy through Law”.

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IV

(30) The participating States recognize that the questions relating to

national minorities can only be satisfactorily resolved in a democratic political

framework based on the rule of law, with a functioning independent judiciary.

This framework guarantees full respect for human rights and fundamental

freedoms, equal rights and status for all citizens, the free expression of all

their legitimate interests and aspirations, political pluralism, social tolerance

and the implementation of legal rules that place effective restraints on the

abuse of governmental power.

They also recognize the important role of non-governmental

organizations, including political parties, trade unions, human rights

organizations and religious groups, in the promotion of tolerance, cultural

diversity and the resolution of questions relating to national minorities.

They further reaffirm that respect for the rights of persons

belonging to national minorities as part of universally recognized human

rights is an essential factor for peace, justice, stability and democracy in the

participating States.

(31) Persons belonging to national minorities have the right to

exercise fully and effectively their human rights and fundamental freedoms

without any discrimination and in full equality before the law.

The participating States will adopt, where necessary, special

measures for the purpose of ensuring to persons belonging to national

minorities full equality with the other citizens in the exercise and enjoyment of

human rights and fundamental freedoms.

(32) To belong to a national minority is a matter of a person’s

individual choice and no disadvantage may arise from the exercise of such

choice.

Persons belonging to national minorities have the right freely to

express, preserve and develop their ethnic, cultural, linguistic or religious

identity and to maintain and develop their culture in all its aspects, free of any

attempts at assimilation against their will. In particular, they have the right

(32.1) — to use freely their mother tongue in private as well as in

public;

(32.2) — to establish and maintain their own educational, cultural

and religious institutions, organizations or associations, which can seek

– 19 –

voluntary financial and other contributions as well as public assistance, in

conformity with national legislation;

(32.3) — to profess and practise their religion, including the

acquisition, possession and use of religious materials, and to conduct religious

educational activities in their mother tongue;

(32.4) — to establish and maintain unimpeded contacts among

themselves within their country as well as contacts across frontiers with

citizens of other States with whom they share a common ethnic or national

origin, cultural heritage or religious beliefs;

(32.5) — to disseminate, have access to and exchange information in

their mother tongue;

(32.6) — to establish and maintain organizations or associations

within their country and to participate in international non-governmental

organizations.

Persons belonging to national minorities can exercise and enjoy

their rights individually as well as in community with other members of their

group. No disadvantage may arise for a person belonging to a national

minority on account of the exercise or non-exercise of any such rights.

(33) The participating States will protect the ethnic, cultural,

linguistic and religious identity of national minorities on their territory and

create conditions for the promotion of that identity. They will take the

necessary measures to that effect after due consultations, including contacts

with organizations or associations of such minorities, in accordance with the

decision-making procedures of each State.

Any such measures will be in conformity with the principles of

equality and non-discrimination with respect to the other citizens of the

participating State concerned.

(34) The participating States will endeavour to ensure that persons

belonging to national minorities, notwithstanding the need to learn the official

language or languages of the State concerned, have adequate opportunities for

instruction of their mother tongue or in their mother tongue, as well as,

wherever possible and necessary, for its use before public authorities, in

conformity with applicable national legislation.

In the context of the teaching of history and culture in

educational establishments, they will also take account of the history and

culture of national minorities.

– 20 –

(35) The participating States will respect the right of persons

belonging to national minorities to effective participation in public affairs,

including participation in the affairs relating to the protection and promotion

of the identity of such minorities.

The participating States note the efforts undertaken to protect

and create conditions for the promotion of the ethnic, cultural, linguistic and

religious identity of certain national minorities by establishing, as one of the

possible means to achieve these aims, appropriate local or autonomous

administrations corresponding to the specific historical and territorial

circumstances of such minorities and in accordance with the policies of the

State concerned.

(36) The participating States recognize the particular importance of

increasing constructive co-operation among themselves on questions relating

to national minorities. Such co-operation seeks to promote mutual

understanding and confidence, friendly and good-neighbourly relations,

international peace, security and justice.

Every participating State will promote a climate of mutual

respect, understanding, co-operation and solidarity among all persons living

on its territory, without distinction as to ethnic or national origin or religion,

and will encourage the solution of problems through dialogue based on the

principles of the rule of law.

(37) None of these commitments may be interpreted as implying

any right to engage in any activity or perform any action in contravention of

the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, other

obligations under international law or the provisions of the Final Act,

including the principle of territorial integrity of States.

(38) The participating States, in their efforts to protect and promote

the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, will fully respect their

undertakings under existing human rights conventions and other relevant

international instruments and consider adhering to the relevant conventions,

if they have not yet done so, including those providing for a right of complaint

by individuals.

(39) The participating States will co-operate closely in the

competent international organizations to which they belong, including the

United Nations and, as appropriate, the Council of Europe, bearing in mind

their on-going work with respect to questions relating to national minorities.

They will consider convening a meeting of experts for a

thorough discussion of the issue of national minorities.

– 21 –

(40) The participating States clearly and unequivocally condemn

totalitarianism, racial and ethnic hatred, anti-semitism, xenophobia and

discrimination against anyone as well as persecution on religious and

ideological grounds. In this context, they also recognize the particular

problems of Roma (gypsies).

They declare their firm intention to intensify the efforts to

combat these phenomena in all their forms and therefore will

(40.1) — take effective measures, including the adoption, in

conformity with their constitutional systems and their international

obligations, of such laws as may be necessary, to provide protection against

any acts that constitute incitement to violence against persons or groups based

on national, racial, ethnic or religious discrimination, hostility or hatred,

including anti-semitism;

(40.2) — commit themselves to take appropriate and proportionate

measures to protect persons or groups who may be subject to threats or acts

of discrimination, hostility or violence as a result of their racial, ethnic,

cultural, linguistic or religious identity, and to protect their property;

(40.3) — take effective measures, in conformity with their

constitutional systems, at the national, regional and local levels to promote

understanding and tolerance, particularly in the fields of education, culture

and information;

(40.4) — endeavour to ensure that the objectives of education include

special attention to the problem of racial prejudice and hatred and to the

development of respect for different civilizations and cultures;

(40.5) — recognize the right of the individual to effective remedies

and endeavour to recognize, in conformity with national legislation, the right

of interested persons and groups to initiate and support complaints against

acts of discrimination, including racist and xenophobic acts;

(40.6) — consider adhering, if they have not yet done so, to the

international instruments which address the problem of discrimination and

ensure full compliance with the obligations therein, including those relating to

the submission of periodic reports;

(40.7) — consider, also, accepting those international mechanisms

which allow States and individuals to bring communications relating to

discrimination before international bodies.

– 22 –

V

(41) The participating States reaffirm their commitment to the

human dimension of the CSCE and emphasize its importance as an integral

part of a balanced approach to security and co-operation in Europe. They

agree that the Conference on the Human Dimension of the CSCE and the

human dimension mechanism described in the section on the human

dimension of the CSCE of the Vienna Concluding Document have

demonstrated their value as methods of furthering their dialogue and

co-operation and assisting in the resolution of relevant specific questions.

They express their conviction that these should be continued and developed as

part of an expanding CSCE process.

(42) The participating States recognize the need to enhance further

the effectiveness of the procedures described in paragraphs 1 to 4 of the

section on the human dimension of the CSCE of the Vienna Concluding

Document and with this aim decide

(42.1) — to provide in as short a time as possible, but no later than

four weeks, a written response to requests for information and to

representations made to them in writing by other participating States under

paragraph 1;

(42.2) — that the bilateral meetings, as contained in paragraph 2, will

take place as soon as possible, as a rule within three weeks of the date of the

request;

(42.3) — to refrain, in the course of a bilateral meeting held under

paragraph 2, from raising situations and cases not connected with the subject

of the meeting, unless both sides have agreed to do so.

(43) The participating States examined practical proposals for new

measures aimed at improving the implementation of the commitments

relating to the human dimension of the CSCE. In this regard, they considered

proposals related to the sending of observers to examine situations and

specific cases, the appointment of rapporteurs to investigate and suggest

appropriate solutions, the setting up of a Committee on the Human

Dimension of the CSCE, greater involvement of persons, organizations and

institutions in the human dimension mechanism and further bilateral and

multilateral efforts to promote the resolution of relevant issues.

They decide to continue to discuss thoroughly in subsequent

– 23 –

relevant CSCE fora these and other proposals designed to strengthen the

human dimension mechanism, and to consider adopting, in the context of the

further development of the CSCE process, appropriate new measures. They

agree that these measures should contribute to achieving further effective

progress, enhance conflict prevention and confidence in the field of the human

dimension of the CSCE.

* * *

– 24 –

(44) The representatives of the participating States express their

profound gratitude to the people and Government of Denmark for the

excellent organization of the Copenhagen Meeting and the warm hospitality

extended to the delegations which participated in the Meeting.

(45) In accordance with the provisions relating to the Conference on

the Human Dimension of the CSCE contained in the Concluding Document of

the Vienna Follow-up Meeting of the CSCE, the third Meeting of the

Conference will take place in Moscow from 10 September to 4 October 1991.

Copenhagen, 29 June 1990

– 25 –

ANNEX

CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT

ON THE ACCESS OF NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS AND THE

MEDIA TO MEETINGS OF

THE CONFERENCE ON THE HUMAN DIMENSION

The Chairman notes that the practices of openness and access to the

Meetings of the Conference on the Human Dimension, as they were applied

at the Vienna Meeting and as contained in Annex XI of the Concluding

Document of that Meeting, are of importance to all participating States. In

order to follow and build upon those practices at forthcoming CSCE

meetings of the Conference on the Human Dimension, the participating

States agree that the following practices of openness and access should be

respected:

— free movement by members of interested non-governmental

organizations (NGOs) in the Conference premises, except for the areas

restricted to delegations and to the services of the Executive Secretariat.

Accordingly, badges will be issued to them, at their request, by the

Executive Secretariat;

— unimpeded contacts between members of interested NGOs and

delegates, as well as with accredited representatives of the media;

— access to official documents of the Conference in all the

working languages and also to any document that delegates might wish to

communicate to members of interested NGOs;

— the opportunity for members of interested NGOs to transmit to

delegates communications relating to the human dimension of the CSCE.

Mailboxes for each delegation will be accessible to them for this purpose;

— free access for delegates to all documents emanating from

interested NGOs and addressed to the Executive Secretariat for the

information of the Conference. Accordingly, the Executive Secretariat will

make available to delegates a regularly updated collection of such

– 26 –

documents.

They further undertake to guarantee to representatives of the media

— free movement in the Conference premises, except for the areas

restricted to delegations and to the services of the Executive Secretariat.

Accordingly, badges will be issued to them by the Executive Secretariat

upon presentation of the requisite credentials;

— unimpeded contacts with delegates and with members of

interested NGOs;

— access to official documents of the Conference in all the

working languages.

The Chairman notes further that this statement will be an Annex to

the Document of the Copenhagen Meeting and will be published with it.

 

DOCUMENT

OF THE COPENHAGEN MEETING OF THE

CONFERENCE ON THE HUMAN DIMENSION OF THE CSCE

The representatives of the participating States of the Conference on

Security and Co-operation in Europe (CSCE), Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria,

Canada, Cyprus, Czechoslovakia, Denmark, Finland, France, the German

Democratic Republic, the Federal Republic of Germany, Greece, the Holy

See, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Liechtenstein, Luxembourg, Malta,

Monaco, the Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Romania, San Marino,

Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics,

the United Kingdom, the United States of America and Yugoslavia, met in

Copenhagen from 5 to 29 June 1990, in accordance with the provisions

relating to the Conference on the Human Dimension of the CSCE contained

in the Concluding Document of the Vienna Follow-up Meeting of the CSCE.

The representative of Albania attended the Copenhagen Meeting as

observer.

The first Meeting of the Conference was held in Paris from 30 May to

23 June 1989.

The Copenhagen Meeting was opened and closed by the Minister for

Foreign Affairs of Denmark.

The formal opening of the Copenhagen Meeting was attended by Her

Majesty the Queen of Denmark and His Royal Highness the Prince Consort.

Opening statements were made by Ministers and Deputy Ministers of

the participating States.

At a special meeting of the Ministers for Foreign Affairs of the

participating States of the CSCE on 5 June 1990, convened on the invitation

of the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Denmark, it was agreed to convene a

Preparatory Committee in Vienna on 10 July 1990 to prepare a Summit

Meeting in Paris of their Heads of State or Government.

– 2 –

The participating States welcome with great satisfaction the

fundamental political changes that have occurred in Europe since the first

Meeting of the Conference on the Human Dimension of the CSCE in Paris in

1989. They note that the CSCE process has contributed significantly to

bringing about these changes and that these developments in turn have

greatly advanced the implementation of the provisions of the Final Act and of

the other CSCE documents.

They recognize that pluralistic democracy and the rule of law are

essential for ensuring respect for all human rights and fundamental freedoms,

the development of human contacts and the resolution of other issues of a

related humanitarian character. They therefore welcome the commitment

expressed by all participating States to the ideals of democracy and political

pluralism as well as their common determination to build democratic societies

based on free elections and the rule of law.

At the Copenhagen Meeting the participating States held a review of

the implementation of their commitments in the field of the human dimension.

They considered that the degree of compliance with the commitments

contained in the relevant provisions of the CSCE documents had shown a

fundamental improvement since the Paris Meeting. They also expressed the

view, however, that further steps are required for the full realization of their

commitments relating to the human dimension.

The participating States express their conviction that full respect for

human rights and fundamental freedoms and the development of societies

based on pluralistic democracy and the rule of law are prerequisites for

progress in setting up the lasting order of peace, security, justice and

co-operation that they seek to establish in Europe. They therefore reaffirm

their commitment to implement fully all provisions of the Final Act and of the

other CSCE documents relating to the human dimension and undertake to

build on the progress they have made.

They recognize that co-operation among themselves, as well as the

active involvement of persons, groups, organizations and institutions, will be

essential to ensure continuing progress towards their shared objectives.

In order to strengthen respect for, and enjoyment of, human rights

and fundamental freedoms, to develop human contacts and to resolve issues of

a related humanitarian character, the participating States agree on the

following:

– 3 –

I

(1) The participating States express their conviction that the

protection and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms is one

of the basic purposes of government, and reaffirm that the recognition of

these rights and freedoms constitutes the foundation of freedom, justice and

peace.

(2) They are determined to support and advance those principles

of justice which form the basis of the rule of law. They consider that the rule

of law does not mean merely a formal legality which assures regularity and

consistency in the achievement and enforcement of democratic order, but

justice based on the recognition and full acceptance of the supreme value of

the human personality and guaranteed by institutions providing a framework

for its fullest expression.

(3) They reaffirm that democracy is an inherent element of the

rule of law. They recognize the importance of pluralism with regard to

political organizations.

(4) They confirm that they will respect each other’s right freely to

choose and develop, in accordance with international human rights standards,

their political, social, economic and cultural systems. In exercising this right,

they will ensure that their laws, regulations, practices and policies conform

with their obligations under international law and are brought into harmony

with the provisions of the Declaration on Principles and other CSCE

commitments.

(5) They solemnly declare that among those elements of justice

which are essential to the full expression of the inherent dignity and of the

equal and inalienable rights of all human beings are the following:

(5.1) — free elections that will be held at reasonable intervals by

secret ballot or by equivalent free voting procedure, under conditions which

ensure in practice the free expression of the opinion of the electors in the

choice of their representatives;

(5.2) — a form of government that is representative in character, in

which the executive is accountable to the elected legislature or the electorate;

– 4 –

(5.3) — the duty of the government and public authorities to comply

with the constitution and to act in a manner consistent with law;

(5.4) — a clear separation between the State and political parties; in

particular, political parties will not be merged with the State;

(5.5) — the activity of the government and the administration as

well as that of the judiciary will be exercised in accordance with the system

established by law. Respect for that system must be ensured;

(5.6) — military forces and the police will be under the control of,

and accountable to, the civil authorities;

(5.7) — human rights and fundamental freedoms will be guaranteed

by law and in accordance with their obligations under international law;

(5.8) — legislation, adopted at the end of a public procedure, and

regulations will be published, that being the condition for their applicability.

Those texts will be accessible to everyone;

(5.9) — all persons are equal before the law and are entitled without

any discrimination to the equal protection of the law. In this respect, the law

will prohibit any discrimination and guarantee to all persons equal and

effective protection against discrimination on any ground;

(5.10) — everyone will have an effective means of redress against

administrative decisions, so as to guarantee respect for fundamental rights

and ensure legal integrity;

(5.11) — administrative decisions against a person must be fully

justifiable and must as a rule indicate the usual remedies available;

(5.12) — the independence of judges and the impartial operation of

the public judicial service will be ensured;

(5.13) — the independence of legal practitioners will be recognized

and protected, in particular as regards conditions for recruitment and

practice;

(5.14) — the rules relating to criminal procedure will contain a clear

definition of powers in relation to prosecution and the measures preceding

and accompanying prosecution;

– 5 –

(5.15) — any person arrested or detained on a criminal charge will

have the right, so that the lawfulness of his arrest or detention can be decided,

to be brought promptly before a judge or other officer authorized by law to

exercise this function;

(5.16) — in the determination of any criminal charge against him, or

of his rights and obligations in a suit at law, everyone will be entitled to a fair

and public hearing by a competent, independent and impartial tribunal

established by law;

(5.17) — any person prosecuted will have the right to defend himself

in person or through prompt legal assistance of his own choosing or, if he does

not have sufficient means to pay for legal assistance, to be given it free when

the interests of justice so require;

(5.18) — no one will be charged with, tried for or convicted of any

criminal offence unless the offence is provided for by a law which defines the

elements of the offence with clarity and precision;

(5.19) — everyone will be presumed innocent until proved guilty

according to law;

(5.20) — considering the important contribution of international

instruments in the field of human rights to the rule of law at a national level,

the participating States reaffirm that they will consider acceding to the

International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, the International

Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights and other relevant

international instruments, if they have not yet done so;

(5.21) — in order to supplement domestic remedies and better to

ensure that the participating States respect the international obligations they

have undertaken, the participating States will consider acceding to a regional

or global international convention concerning the protection of human rights,

such as the European Convention on Human Rights or the Optional Protocol

to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, which provide for

procedures of individual recourse to international bodies.

(6) The participating States declare that the will of the people,

freely and fairly expressed through periodic and genuine elections, is the basis

of the authority and legitimacy of all government. The participating States

will accordingly respect the right of their citizens to take part in the governing

of their country, either directly or through representatives freely chosen by

them through fair electoral processes. They recognize their responsibility to

defend and protect, in accordance with their laws, their international human

– 6 –

rights obligations and their international commitments, the democratic order

freely established through the will of the people against the activities of

persons, groups or organizations that engage in or refuse to renounce

terrorism or violence aimed at the overthrow of that order or of that of

another participating State.

(7) To ensure that the will of the people serves as the basis of the

authority of government, the participating States will

(7.1) — hold free elections at reasonable intervals, as established by

law;

(7.2) — permit all seats in at least one chamber of the national

legislature to be freely contested in a popular vote;

(7.3) — guarantee universal and equal suffrage to adult citizens;

(7.4) — ensure that votes are cast by secret ballot or by equivalent

free voting procedure, and that they are counted and reported honestly with

the official results made public;

(7.5) — respect the right of citizens to seek political or public office,

individually or as representatives of political parties or organizations, without

discrimination;

(7.6) — respect the right of individuals and groups to establish, in

full freedom, their own political parties or other political organizations and

provide such political parties and organizations with the necessary legal

guarantees to enable them to compete with each other on a basis of equal

treatment before the law and by the authorities;

(7.7) — ensure that law and public policy work to permit political

campaigning to be conducted in a fair and free atmosphere in which neither

administrative action, violence nor intimidation bars the parties and the

candidates from freely presenting their views and qualifications, or prevents

the voters from learning and discussing them or from casting their vote free of

fear of retribution;

(7.8) — provide that no legal or administrative obstacle stands in the

way of unimpeded access to the media on a non-discriminatory basis for all

political groupings and individuals wishing to participate in the electoral

process;

– 7 –

(7.9) — ensure that candidates who obtain the necessary number of

votes required by law are duly installed in office and are permitted to remain

in office until their term expires or is otherwise brought to an end in a manner

that is regulated by law in conformity with democratic parliamentary and

constitutional procedures.

(8) The participating States consider that the presence of

observers, both foreign and domestic, can enhance the electoral process for

States in which elections are taking place. They therefore invite observers

from any other CSCE participating States and any appropriate private

institutions and organizations who may wish to do so to observe the course of

their national election proceedings, to the extent permitted by law. They will

also endeavour to facilitate similar access for election proceedings held below

the national level. Such observers will undertake not to interfere in the

electoral proceedings.

– 8 –

II

(9) The participating States reaffirm that

(9.1) — everyone will have the right to freedom of expression

including the right to communication. This right will include freedom to hold

opinions and to receive and impart information and ideas without

interference by public authority and regardless of frontiers. The exercise of

this right may be subject only to such restrictions as are prescribed by law

and are consistent with international standards. In particular, no limitation

will be imposed on access to, and use of, means of reproducing documents of

any kind, while respecting, however, rights relating to intellectual property,

including copyright;

(9.2) — everyone will have the right of peaceful assembly and

demonstration. Any restrictions which may be placed on the exercise of these

rights will be prescribed by law and consistent with international standards;

(9.3) — the right of association will be guaranteed. The right to form

and — subject to the general right of a trade union to determine its own

membership — freely to join a trade union will be guaranteed. These rights

will exclude any prior control. Freedom of association for workers, including

the freedom to strike, will be guaranteed, subject to limitations prescribed by

law and consistent with international standards;

(9.4) — everyone will have the right to freedom of thought,

conscience and religion. This right includes freedom to change one’s religion

or belief and freedom to manifest one’s religion or belief, either alone or in

community with others, in public or in private, through worship, teaching,

practice and observance. The exercise of these rights may be subject only to

such restrictions as are prescribed by law and are consistent with

international standards;

(9.5) — they will respect the right of everyone to leave any country,

including his own, and to return to his country, consistent with a State’s

international obligations and CSCE commitments. Restrictions on this right

will have the character of very rare exceptions, will be considered necessary

only if they respond to a specific public need, pursue a legitimate aim and are

proportionate to that aim, and will not be abused or applied in an arbitrary

manner;

– 9 –

(9.6) — everyone has the right peacefully to enjoy his property

either on his own or in common with others. No one may be deprived of his

property except in the public interest and subject to the conditions provided

for by law and consistent with international commitments and obligations.

(10) In reaffirming their commitment to ensure effectively the rights

of the individual to know and act upon human rights and fundamental

freedoms, and to contribute actively, individually or in association with

others, to their promotion and protection, the participating States express

their commitment to

(10.1) — respect the right of everyone, individually or in association

with others, to seek, receive and impart freely views and information on

human rights and fundamental freedoms, including the rights to disseminate

and publish such views and information;

(10.2) — respect the rights of everyone, individually or in association

with others, to study and discuss the observance of human rights and

fundamental freedoms and to develop and discuss ideas for improved

protection of human rights and better means for ensuring compliance with

international human rights standards;

(10.3) — ensure that individuals are permitted to exercise the right to

association, including the right to form, join and participate effectively in

non-governmental organizations which seek the promotion and protection of

human rights and fundamental freedoms, including trade unions and human

rights monitoring groups;

(10.4) — allow members of such groups and organizations to have

unhindered access to and communication with similar bodies within and

outside their countries and with international organizations, to engage in

exchanges, contacts and co-operation with such groups and organizations and

to solicit, receive and utilize for the purpose of promoting and protecting

human rights and fundamental freedoms voluntary financial contributions

from national and international sources as provided for by law.

(11) The participating States further affirm that, where violations of

human rights and fundamental freedoms are alleged to have occurred, the

effective remedies available include

(11.1) — the right of the individual to seek and receive adequate legal

assistance;

– 10 –

(11.2) — the right of the individual to seek and receive assistance

from others in defending human rights and fundamental freedoms, and to

assist others in defending human rights and fundamental freedoms;

(11.3) — the right of individuals or groups acting on their behalf to

communicate with international bodies with competence to receive and

consider information concerning allegations of human rights abuses.

(12) The participating States, wishing to ensure greater

transparency in the implementation of the commitments undertaken in the

Vienna Concluding Document under the heading of the human dimension of

the CSCE, decide to accept as a confidence-building measure the presence of

observers sent by participating States and representatives of

non-governmental organizations and other interested persons at proceedings

before courts as provided for in national legislation and international law; it is

understood that proceedings may only be held in camera in the circumstances

prescribed by law and consistent with obligations under international law and

international commitments.

(13) The participating States decide to accord particular attention

to the recognition of the rights of the child, his civil rights and his individual

freedoms, his economic, social and cultural rights, and his right to special

protection against all forms of violence and exploitation. They will consider

acceding to the Convention on the Rights of the Child, if they have not yet

done so, which was opened for signature by States on 26 January 1990. They

will recognize in their domestic legislation the rights of the child as affirmed in

the international agreements to which they are Parties.

(14) The participating States agree to encourage the creation, within

their countries, of conditions for the training of students and trainees from

other participating States, including persons taking vocational and technical

courses. They also agree to promote travel by young people from their

countries for the purpose of obtaining education in other participating States

and to that end to encourage the conclusion, where appropriate, of bilateral

and multilateral agreements between their relevant governmental institutions,

organizations and educational establishments.

(15) The participating States will act in such a way as to facilitate

the transfer of sentenced persons and encourage those participating States

which are not Parties to the Convention on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons,

signed at Strasbourg on 21 November 1983, to consider acceding to the

Convention.

– 11 –

(16) The participating States

(16.1) — reaffirm their commitment to prohibit torture and other

cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, to take effective

legislative, administrative, judicial and other measures to prevent and punish

such practices, to protect individuals from any psychiatric or other medical

practices that violate human rights and fundamental freedoms and to take

effective measures to prevent and punish such practices;

(16.2) — intend, as a matter of urgency, to consider acceding to the

Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading

Treatment or Punishment, if they have not yet done so, and recognizing the

competences of the Committee against Torture under articles 21 and 22 of the

Convention and withdrawing reservations regarding the competence of the

Committee under article 20;

(16.3) — stress that no exceptional circumstances whatsoever,

whether a state of war or a threat of war, internal political instability or any

other public emergency, may be invoked as a justification of torture;

(16.4) — will ensure that education and information regarding the

prohibition against torture are fully included in the training of law

enforcement personnel, civil or military, medical personnel, public officials

and other persons who may be involved in the custody, interrogation or

treatment of any individual subjected to any form of arrest, detention or

imprisonment;

(16.5) — will keep under systematic review interrogation rules,

instructions, methods and practices as well as arrangements for the custody

and treatment of persons subjected to any form of arrest, detention or

imprisonment in any territory under their jurisdiction, with a view to

preventing any cases of torture;

(16.6) — will take up with priority for consideration and for

appropriate action, in accordance with the agreed measures and procedures

for the effective implementation of the commitments relating to the human

dimension of the CSCE, any cases of torture and other inhuman or degrading

treatment or punishment made known to them through official channels or

coming from any other reliable source of information;

(16.7) — will act upon the understanding that preserving and

guaranteeing the life and security of any individual subjected to any form of

torture and other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment will be the

– 12 –

sole criterion in determining the urgency and priorities to be accorded in

taking appropriate remedial action; and, therefore, the consideration of any

cases of torture and other inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment

within the framework of any other international body or mechanism may not

be invoked as a reason for refraining from consideration and appropriate

action in accordance with the agreed measures and procedures for the

effective implementation of the commitments relating to the human dimension

of the CSCE.

(17) The participating States

(17.1) — recall the commitment undertaken in the Vienna

Concluding Document to keep the question of capital punishment under

consideration and to co-operate within relevant international organizations;

(17.2) — recall, in this context, the adoption by the General Assembly

of the United Nations, on 15 December 1989, of the Second Optional Protocol

to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, aiming at the

abolition of the death penalty;

(17.3) — note the restrictions and safeguards regarding the use of the

death penalty which have been adopted by the international community, in

particular article 6 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political

Rights;

(17.4) — note the provisions of the Sixth Protocol to the European

Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms,

concerning the abolition of the death penalty;

(17.5) — note recent measures taken by a number of participating

States towards the abolition of capital punishment;

(17.6) — note the activities of several non-governmental

organizations on the question of the death penalty;

(17.7) — will exchange information within the framework of the

Conference on the Human Dimension on the question of the abolition of the

death penalty and keep that question under consideration;

(17.8) — will make available to the public information regarding the

use of the death penalty.

(18) The participating States

– 13 –

(18.1) — note that the United Nations Commission on Human Rights

has recognized the right of everyone to have conscientious objections to

military service;

(18.2) — note recent measures taken by a number of participating

States to permit exemption from compulsory military service on the basis of

conscientious objections;

(18.3) — note the activities of several non-governmental

organizations on the question of conscientious objections to compulsory

military service;

(18.4) — agree to consider introducing, where this has not yet been

done, various forms of alternative service, which are compatible with the

reasons for conscientious objection, such forms of alternative service being in

principle of a non-combatant or civilian nature, in the public interest and of a

non-punitive nature;

(18.5) — will make available to the public information on this issue;

(18.6) — will keep under consideration, within the framework of the

Conference on the Human Dimension, the relevant questions related to the

exemption from compulsory military service, where it exists, of individuals on

the basis of conscientious objections to armed service, and will exchange

information on these questions.

(19) The participating States affirm that freer movement and

contacts among their citizens are important in the context of the protection

and promotion of human rights and fundamental freedoms. They will ensure

that their policies concerning entry into their territories are fully consistent

with the aims set out in the relevant provisions of the Final Act, the Madrid

Concluding Document and the Vienna Concluding Document. While

reaffirming their determination not to recede from the commitments

contained in CSCE documents, they undertake to implement fully and

improve present commitments in the field of human contacts, including on a

bilateral and multilateral basis. In this context they will

(19.1) — strive to implement the procedures for entry into their

territories, including the issuing of visas and passport and customs control, in

good faith and without unjustified delay. Where necessary, they will shorten

the waiting time for visa decisions, as well as simplify practices and reduce

administrative requirements for visa applications;

– 14 –

(19.2) — ensure, in dealing with visa applications, that these are

processed as expeditiously as possible in order, inter alia, to take due account

of important family, personal or professional considerations, especially in

cases of an urgent, humanitarian nature;

(19.3) — endeavour, where necessary, to reduce fees charged in

connection with visa applications to the lowest possible level.

(20) The participating States concerned will consult and, where

appropriate, cooperate in dealing with problems that might emerge as a result

of the increased movement of persons.

(21) The participating States recommend the consideration, at the

next CSCE Follow-up Meeting in Helsinki, of the advisability of holding a

meeting of experts on consular matters.

(22) The participating States reaffirm that the protection and

promotion of the rights of migrant workers have their human dimension. In

this context, they

(22.1) — agree that the protection and promotion of the rights of

migrant workers are the concern of all participating States and that as such

they should be addressed within the CSCE process;

(22.2) — reaffirm their commitment to implement fully in their

domestic legislation the rights of migrant workers provided for in

international agreements to which they are parties;

(22.3) — consider that, in future international instruments

concerning the rights of migrant workers, they should take into account the

fact that this issue is of importance for all of them;

(22.4) — express their readiness to examine, at future CSCE

meetings, the relevant aspects of the further promotion of the rights of

migrant workers and their families.

(23) The participating States reaffirm their conviction expressed in

the Vienna Concluding Document that the promotion of economic, social and

cultural rights as well as of civil and political rights is of paramount

importance for human dignity and for the attainment of the legitimate

aspirations of every individual. They also reaffirm their commitment taken in

the Document of the Bonn Conference on Economic Co-operation in Europe

– 15 –

to the promotion of social justice and the improvement of living and working

conditions. In the context of continuing their efforts with a view to achieving

progressively the full realization of economic, social and cultural rights by all

appropriate means, they will pay special attention to problems in the areas of

employment, housing, social security, health, education and culture.

(24) The participating States will ensure that the exercise of all the

human rights and fundamental freedoms set out above will not be subject to

any restrictions except those which are provided by law and are consistent

with their obligations under international law, in particular the International

Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, and with their international

commitments, in particular the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

These restrictions have the character of exceptions. The participating States

will ensure that these restrictions are not abused and are not applied in an

arbitrary manner, but in such a way that the effective exercise of these rights

is ensured.

Any restriction on rights and freedoms must, in a democratic

society, relate to one of the objectives of the applicable law and be strictly

proportionate to the aim of that law.

(25) The participating States confirm that any derogations from

obligations relating to human rights and fundamental freedoms during a state

of public emergency must remain strictly within the limits provided for by

international law, in particular the relevant international instruments by

which they are bound, especially with respect to rights from which there can

be no derogation. They also reaffirm that

(25.1) — measures derogating from such obligations must be taken in

strict conformity with the procedural requirements laid down in those

instruments;

(25.2) — the imposition of a state of public emergency must be

proclaimed officially, publicly, and in accordance with the provisions laid

down by law;

(25.3) — measures derogating from obligations will be limited to the

extent strictly required by the exigencies of the situation;

(25.4) — such measures will not discriminate solely on the grounds of

race, colour, sex, language, religion, social origin or of belonging to a minority.

– 16 –

III

(26) The participating States recognize that vigorous democracy

depends on the existence as an integral part of national life of democratic

values and practices as well as an extensive range of democratic institutions.

They will therefore encourage, facilitate and, where appropriate, support

practical co-operative endeavours and the sharing of information, ideas and

expertise among themselves and by direct contacts and co-operation between

individuals, groups and organizations in areas including the following:

— constitutional law, reform and development,

— electoral legislation, administration and observation,

— establishment and management of courts and legal systems,

— the development of an impartial and effective public service

where recruitment and advancement are based on a merit system,

— law enforcement,

— local government and decentralization,

— access to information and protection of privacy,

— developing political parties and their role in pluralistic

societies,

— free and independent trade unions,

— co-operative movements,

— developing other forms of free associations and public interest

groups,

— journalism, independent media, and intellectual and cultural

life,

— the teaching of democratic values, institutions and practices in

educational institutions and the fostering of an atmosphere of free enquiry.

Such endeavours may cover the range of co-operation

encompassed in the human dimension of the CSCE, including training,

exchange of information, books and instructional materials, co-operative

programmes and projects, academic and professional exchanges and

conferences, scholarships, research grants, provision of expertise and advice,

business and scientific contacts and programmes.

(27) The participating States will also facilitate the establishment

and strengthening of independent national institutions in the area of human

rights and the rule of law, which may also serve as focal points for

co-ordination and collaboration between such institutions in the participating

States. They propose that co-operation be encouraged between

– 17 –

parliamentarians from participating States, including through existing

inter-parliamentary associations and, inter alia, through joint commissions,

television debates involving parliamentarians, meetings and round-table

discussions. They will also encourage existing institutions, such as

organizations within the United Nations system and the Council of Europe, to

continue and expand the work they have begun in this area.

(28) The participating States recognize the important expertise of

the Council of Europe in the field of human rights and fundamental freedoms

and agree to consider further ways and means to enable the Council of

Europe to make a contribution to the human dimension of the CSCE. They

agree that the nature of this contribution could be examined further in a

future CSCE forum.

(29) The participating States will consider the idea of convening a

meeting or seminar of experts to review and discuss co-operative measures

designed to promote and sustain viable democratic institutions in

participating States, including comparative studies of legislation in

participating States in the area of human rights and fundamental freedoms,

inter alia drawing upon the experience acquired in this area by the Council of

Europe and the activities of the Commission “Democracy through Law”.

– 18 –

IV

(30) The participating States recognize that the questions relating to

national minorities can only be satisfactorily resolved in a democratic political

framework based on the rule of law, with a functioning independent judiciary.

This framework guarantees full respect for human rights and fundamental

freedoms, equal rights and status for all citizens, the free expression of all

their legitimate interests and aspirations, political pluralism, social tolerance

and the implementation of legal rules that place effective restraints on the

abuse of governmental power.

They also recognize the important role of non-governmental

organizations, including political parties, trade unions, human rights

organizations and religious groups, in the promotion of tolerance, cultural

diversity and the resolution of questions relating to national minorities.

They further reaffirm that respect for the rights of persons

belonging to national minorities as part of universally recognized human

rights is an essential factor for peace, justice, stability and democracy in the

participating States.

(31) Persons belonging to national minorities have the right to

exercise fully and effectively their human rights and fundamental freedoms

without any discrimination and in full equality before the law.

The participating States will adopt, where necessary, special

measures for the purpose of ensuring to persons belonging to national

minorities full equality with the other citizens in the exercise and enjoyment of

human rights and fundamental freedoms.

(32) To belong to a national minority is a matter of a person’s

individual choice and no disadvantage may arise from the exercise of such

choice.

Persons belonging to national minorities have the right freely to

express, preserve and develop their ethnic, cultural, linguistic or religious

identity and to maintain and develop their culture in all its aspects, free of any

attempts at assimilation against their will. In particular, they have the right

(32.1) — to use freely their mother tongue in private as well as in

public;

(32.2) — to establish and maintain their own educational, cultural

and religious institutions, organizations or associations, which can seek

– 19 –

voluntary financial and other contributions as well as public assistance, in

conformity with national legislation;

(32.3) — to profess and practise their religion, including the

acquisition, possession and use of religious materials, and to conduct religious

educational activities in their mother tongue;

(32.4) — to establish and maintain unimpeded contacts among

themselves within their country as well as contacts across frontiers with

citizens of other States with whom they share a common ethnic or national

origin, cultural heritage or religious beliefs;

(32.5) — to disseminate, have access to and exchange information in

their mother tongue;

(32.6) — to establish and maintain organizations or associations

within their country and to participate in international non-governmental

organizations.

Persons belonging to national minorities can exercise and enjoy

their rights individually as well as in community with other members of their

group. No disadvantage may arise for a person belonging to a national

minority on account of the exercise or non-exercise of any such rights.

(33) The participating States will protect the ethnic, cultural,

linguistic and religious identity of national minorities on their territory and

create conditions for the promotion of that identity. They will take the

necessary measures to that effect after due consultations, including contacts

with organizations or associations of such minorities, in accordance with the

decision-making procedures of each State.

Any such measures will be in conformity with the principles of

equality and non-discrimination with respect to the other citizens of the

participating State concerned.

(34) The participating States will endeavour to ensure that persons

belonging to national minorities, notwithstanding the need to learn the official

language or languages of the State concerned, have adequate opportunities for

instruction of their mother tongue or in their mother tongue, as well as,

wherever possible and necessary, for its use before public authorities, in

conformity with applicable national legislation.

In the context of the teaching of history and culture in

educational establishments, they will also take account of the history and

culture of national minorities.

– 20 –

(35) The participating States will respect the right of persons

belonging to national minorities to effective participation in public affairs,

including participation in the affairs relating to the protection and promotion

of the identity of such minorities.

The participating States note the efforts undertaken to protect

and create conditions for the promotion of the ethnic, cultural, linguistic and

religious identity of certain national minorities by establishing, as one of the

possible means to achieve these aims, appropriate local or autonomous

administrations corresponding to the specific historical and territorial

circumstances of such minorities and in accordance with the policies of the

State concerned.

(36) The participating States recognize the particular importance of

increasing constructive co-operation among themselves on questions relating

to national minorities. Such co-operation seeks to promote mutual

understanding and confidence, friendly and good-neighbourly relations,

international peace, security and justice.

Every participating State will promote a climate of mutual

respect, understanding, co-operation and solidarity among all persons living

on its territory, without distinction as to ethnic or national origin or religion,

and will encourage the solution of problems through dialogue based on the

principles of the rule of law.

(37) None of these commitments may be interpreted as implying

any right to engage in any activity or perform any action in contravention of

the purposes and principles of the Charter of the United Nations, other

obligations under international law or the provisions of the Final Act,

including the principle of territorial integrity of States.

(38) The participating States, in their efforts to protect and promote

the rights of persons belonging to national minorities, will fully respect their

undertakings under existing human rights conventions and other relevant

international instruments and consider adhering to the relevant conventions,

if they have not yet done so, including those providing for a right of complaint

by individuals.

(39) The participating States will co-operate closely in the

competent international organizations to which they belong, including the

United Nations and, as appropriate, the Council of Europe, bearing in mind

their on-going work with respect to questions relating to national minorities.

They will consider convening a meeting of experts for a

thorough discussion of the issue of national minorities.

– 21 –

(40) The participating States clearly and unequivocally condemn

totalitarianism, racial and ethnic hatred, anti-semitism, xenophobia and

discrimination against anyone as well as persecution on religious and

ideological grounds. In this context, they also recognize the particular

problems of Roma (gypsies).

They declare their firm intention to intensify the efforts to

combat these phenomena in all their forms and therefore will

(40.1) — take effective measures, including the adoption, in

conformity with their constitutional systems and their international

obligations, of such laws as may be necessary, to provide protection against

any acts that constitute incitement to violence against persons or groups based

on national, racial, ethnic or religious discrimination, hostility or hatred,

including anti-semitism;

(40.2) — commit themselves to take appropriate and proportionate

measures to protect persons or groups who may be subject to threats or acts

of discrimination, hostility or violence as a result of their racial, ethnic,

cultural, linguistic or religious identity, and to protect their property;

(40.3) — take effective measures, in conformity with their

constitutional systems, at the national, regional and local levels to promote

understanding and tolerance, particularly in the fields of education, culture

and information;

(40.4) — endeavour to ensure that the objectives of education include

special attention to the problem of racial prejudice and hatred and to the

development of respect for different civilizations and cultures;

(40.5) — recognize the right of the individual to effective remedies

and endeavour to recognize, in conformity with national legislation, the right

of interested persons and groups to initiate and support complaints against

acts of discrimination, including racist and xenophobic acts;

(40.6) — consider adhering, if they have not yet done so, to the

international instruments which address the problem of discrimination and

ensure full compliance with the obligations therein, including those relating to

the submission of periodic reports;

(40.7) — consider, also, accepting those international mechanisms

which allow States and individuals to bring communications relating to

discrimination before international bodies.

– 22 –

V

(41) The participating States reaffirm their commitment to the

human dimension of the CSCE and emphasize its importance as an integral

part of a balanced approach to security and co-operation in Europe. They

agree that the Conference on the Human Dimension of the CSCE and the

human dimension mechanism described in the section on the human

dimension of the CSCE of the Vienna Concluding Document have

demonstrated their value as methods of furthering their dialogue and

co-operation and assisting in the resolution of relevant specific questions.

They express their conviction that these should be continued and developed as

part of an expanding CSCE process.

(42) The participating States recognize the need to enhance further

the effectiveness of the procedures described in paragraphs 1 to 4 of the

section on the human dimension of the CSCE of the Vienna Concluding

Document and with this aim decide

(42.1) — to provide in as short a time as possible, but no later than

four weeks, a written response to requests for information and to

representations made to them in writing by other participating States under

paragraph 1;

(42.2) — that the bilateral meetings, as contained in paragraph 2, will

take place as soon as possible, as a rule within three weeks of the date of the

request;

(42.3) — to refrain, in the course of a bilateral meeting held under

paragraph 2, from raising situations and cases not connected with the subject

of the meeting, unless both sides have agreed to do so.

(43) The participating States examined practical proposals for new

measures aimed at improving the implementation of the commitments

relating to the human dimension of the CSCE. In this regard, they considered

proposals related to the sending of observers to examine situations and

specific cases, the appointment of rapporteurs to investigate and suggest

appropriate solutions, the setting up of a Committee on the Human

Dimension of the CSCE, greater involvement of persons, organizations and

institutions in the human dimension mechanism and further bilateral and

multilateral efforts to promote the resolution of relevant issues.

They decide to continue to discuss thoroughly in subsequent

– 23 –

relevant CSCE fora these and other proposals designed to strengthen the

human dimension mechanism, and to consider adopting, in the context of the

further development of the CSCE process, appropriate new measures. They

agree that these measures should contribute to achieving further effective

progress, enhance conflict prevention and confidence in the field of the human

dimension of the CSCE.

* * *

– 24 –

(44) The representatives of the participating States express their

profound gratitude to the people and Government of Denmark for the

excellent organization of the Copenhagen Meeting and the warm hospitality

extended to the delegations which participated in the Meeting.

(45) In accordance with the provisions relating to the Conference on

the Human Dimension of the CSCE contained in the Concluding Document of

the Vienna Follow-up Meeting of the CSCE, the third Meeting of the

Conference will take place in Moscow from 10 September to 4 October 1991.

Copenhagen, 29 June 1990

– 25 –

ANNEX

CHAIRMAN’S STATEMENT

ON THE ACCESS OF NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANIZATIONS AND THE

MEDIA TO MEETINGS OF

THE CONFERENCE ON THE HUMAN DIMENSION

The Chairman notes that the practices of openness and access to the

Meetings of the Conference on the Human Dimension, as they were applied

at the Vienna Meeting and as contained in Annex XI of the Concluding

Document of that Meeting, are of importance to all participating States. In

order to follow and build upon those practices at forthcoming CSCE

meetings of the Conference on the Human Dimension, the participating

States agree that the following practices of openness and access should be

respected:

— free movement by members of interested non-governmental

organizations (NGOs) in the Conference premises, except for the areas

restricted to delegations and to the services of the Executive Secretariat.

Accordingly, badges will be issued to them, at their request, by the

Executive Secretariat;

— unimpeded contacts between members of interested NGOs and

delegates, as well as with accredited representatives of the media;

— access to official documents of the Conference in all the

working languages and also to any document that delegates might wish to

communicate to members of interested NGOs;

— the opportunity for members of interested NGOs to transmit to

delegates communications relating to the human dimension of the CSCE.

Mailboxes for each delegation will be accessible to them for this purpose;

— free access for delegates to all documents emanating from

interested NGOs and addressed to the Executive Secretariat for the

information of the Conference. Accordingly, the Executive Secretariat will

make available to delegates a regularly updated collection of such

– 26 –

documents.

They further undertake to guarantee to representatives of the media

— free movement in the Conference premises, except for the areas

restricted to delegations and to the services of the Executive Secretariat.

Accordingly, badges will be issued to them by the Executive Secretariat

upon presentation of the requisite credentials;

— unimpeded contacts with delegates and with members of

interested NGOs;

— access to official documents of the Conference in all the

working languages.

The Chairman notes further that this statement will be an Annex to

the Document of the Copenhagen Meeting and will be published with it.

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