HC Deb 19 June 2002 vol 387 c401W
Mr. Gordon Prentice

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what consideration is given to resolutions from the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe in shaping Government policy on enlargement of the EU. [62691]

Peter Hain

The key consideration for EU accession is the fulfilment of the Copenhagen political and economic criteria, and the adoption of requisite EU legislation (acquis communautaires). In assessing candidates' readiness for accession, HMG takes into account the candidates' alignment with the acquis and the Copenhagen criteria as well as other relevant sources of information. Some of the Copenhagen criteria cover similar ground to key COE principles: human rights, rule of law and pluralist democracy. All Council of Europe Parliamentary Assembly (PACE) resolutions are brought to the attention of the Governments of all the Council of Europe member states. The resolutions play an important role in ensuring COE member states meet core COE Standards.

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