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The decision to bring into the Council of Europe the countries of Central and Eastern Europe after the fall of the Berlin Wall was one of the most courageous political decisions ever. Although very few people in Europe object to the idea of democracy, some of the countries that applied to join the Council of Europe had never experienced democracy in their past and very few of their people at the time knew precisely what it meant. It was not only a matter of reforming state institutions and changing legislation (a huge task in itself!), but first and foremost, of changing mentalities and creating a democratic culture. This is not a one-way process, in which “old” democracies decant some of their knowledge to the “new” ones. The solutions that have worked for some are not necessarily applicable for others, because the entire context is different. This is where the Parliamentary Assembly is making an invaluable contribution.
 
CONTRIBUTOR
Mevlüt Çavuşoğlu
Mevlüt ÇavuşoğluMevlüt Çavuşoğlu is the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Turkey.
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Foreword After the violent dissolution of the former Yugoslavia in the 1990s, there had been a shared sense of hope for a more peaceful future for the European continent. Unfortunately, this comfortability disappeared after Russian President Vladimir Putin ordered his troops to march against the Ukrainian forces throughout the border on 24 February 2022. This marked a turning point not only for the region...
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