Yearbook of European Law - Vol. 4

By A. Barav; D. A. Wyatt | Go to book overview

Council of Europe -- Legal Co-operation in
1989*

HANS-JÜRGEN BARTSCH

As predicted,1 the Council's membership has again been enlarged: on 5 May 1989, Finland joined the organization as its 23rd member. As regards legal co-operation, Finland's membership formalized the close relationship with the Council of Europe which had developed over the years. The country had been represented by observers on a number of expert committees, and as a non-member State it had acceded to several co-operation agreements such as the European Conventions on Extradition (in 1971), on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters (in 1981), and on the Transfer of Sentenced Persons (in 1987).

More perceptible repercussions on the Council's co-operation structures can be expected from the future accession of those Central and Eastern European countries which have recently espoused the concepts and values underlying the Council's Statute: pluralist democracy, rule of law, and protection of human rights. Hungary, Poland, and Yugoslavia have already applied for membership. It is expected that Hungary, as the first of the applicant countries fully to comply with the conditions for membership, will join the organization before the end of 1990.

In 1989, two new treaties have been opened for signature: the Convention on Insider Trading and its Protocol2 and the European Convention on Transfrontier Television.3 The Recommendations adopted in 1989 in pursuance of the Council's legal co-operation and harmonisation programme refer to such matters as contributions following divorce, data protection in the employment sector, provisional protection against administrative acts, and computer-related crime.

____________________
*
© Hans-JÜrgen Bartsch, 1990. Directorate of Legal Affairs, Council of Europe, Strasbourg. I wish to thank my colleagues Lawrence Early and Hans G. Nilsson for their assistance.
1
Bartsch, 8 YEL279 ( 1988).
2
Of 20 Apr and 11 Sept 1989: European Treaty Series Nos. 130 and 133. The English text of the Convention and the Protocol is annexed to this survey.
3
Of 5 May 1989: European Treaty Series No. 132. For a comprehensive discussion of the Convention and its relationship with the (then draft) EC Council Directive see F. Hondius, 8 YEL141-69 ( 1988). Cf. also I. Schwartz, Europarecht ( 1989) 1-12. The Council Directive was adopted on 3 Oct 1989, OJ 1989 L 298.

-367-

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