European rights assembly condemns crimes of communist-era regimes

European rights assembly condemns crimes of communist-era regimes

[JURIST] Parliamentarians of the Council of Europe [official website], often referred to as Europe's human rights watchdog body, have approved a resolution [text] which condemns crimes committed by communist regimes in Central and Eastern Europe [COE press release] during the Cold War [BBC backgrounder]. The Council's Parliamentary Assembly on Wednesday labeled the crimes as "massive violations of human rights" and agreed that "those victims of crimes committed by totalitarian Communist regimes who are still alive deserve sympathy, understanding and recognition for their suffering." The resolution was extensively debated and the decision to approve it reopened a sensitive issue in the newly formed democracies of Europe, which have tended to focus on the Council more than most Western Europe states who were part of the pre-enlargement European Union. The Guardian has more.