Marietje Schaake just submitted the questions below to High Representative Federica Mogherini.
According to newspaper reports Argentina has prevented more than 60 members from non-governmental organisations from participating in a World Trade Organization ministerial meeting in Buenos Aires in December.
The decision applies to NGO-members that had been officially accredited by the WTO to attend the ministerial meeting.(1)
In its Council conclusions of 19 June the Council reaffirmed the EU's opposition to any unjustified restrictions to freedom of association, expression and peaceful assembly that hinder the work of CSOs. The conclusions called on the Commission “to uphold and reinforce its support to enhance the enabling environment for civil society in partner countries and to protect the democratic space at all levels, from local to national, regional and global”. (2)
Is the VP/HR aware of this situation and has she been in contact with Argentinian authorities?
Has the WTO taken steps to ensure civil society representatives can participate?
What can the EEAS do to ensure NGO’s are accepted and included in events of international and multilateral organizations, particularly those that EU speakers participate in?