COMECE recalls the need for a rights-based approach in EU External Action
COMECE contributed to a consultation launched by the European External Action Service providing recommendations on EU priority actions to promote Human Rights and Democracy in the world. The COMECE contribution was elaborated in view of the renewal of the EU Action Plan on Human Rights and Democracy (2020-2024).
Recalling that human rights are universal, inviolable, inalienable, indivisible, interdependent, interrelated and non-hierarchised, COMECE proposed to include in the future EU Action Plan specific initiatives in areas such as religious freedom, rights of the child, women and families, migrants/asylum seekers, as well as of indigenous and Roma people.
COMECE advocates to increase the focus on economic, social and cultural rights, and to ensure that security measures fully respect fundamental freedoms of people. The scope of the future Action Plan should - according to COMECE - include a rule of law pillar, in full coherence with EU’s internal policies and practices.
Following up on its reflections in the context of the October 2017 European Parliament’s report addressing shrinking civil society space, COMECE reiterated the call for strengthening multi-stakeholder partnerships and to adopt an integral approach for human rights. Being strong advocates of a rights-based approach and key actors on the ground in defending human rights, building peace and providing basic social service, Churches and religious organisations should be considered natural partners in this regard.