Legal Settlement of Communist Crimes – conference programme

5 June, 2012
European Parliament, Brussels
Room PHS 7 C 50

Welcome and Greetings

Opening speech
Prof. Jerzy Buzek, MEP (PL), former President of the European Parliament

Audio recording (Sandra Kalniete, Jerzy Buzek)17 MB, mp3

9.00 – 10.30
Crimes of Communism – why does Europe need to do more?
(The moral and legal obligation to provide international legal settlement for the Communist crimes)
Chair: Sandra Kalniete, MEP, Chairwoman, Reconciliation of European Histories group (LV)

  • Communism and its crimes – overcoming history dialectics – Dr. Ján Čarnogurský, former Prime Minister of Slovakia (SK)
  • Communist crimes without statutory limitations  Dr. Martin Alm, Department of history, Aarhus University (DK)
  • Prosecuting Communist crimes – Polish experience – Dr. Łukasz Kamiński, President, Institute of National Remembrance (PL)
  • Legal and political constraints in prosecuting the Communist crimes in Romania Dr. Raluca Grosescu, Institute for the Investigation of Communist Crimes and the Memory of the Romanian Exile (RO)
  • Initiative ”Declaration 2012“ – Dr. Zdeněk Boháč (90), leader of the initiative (CZ)


Audio recording (Sandra Kalniete, Ján Čarnogurský, Martin Alm, Łukasz Kamiński, Raluca Grosescu, Zdeněk Boháč, discussion); 88.6 MB, mp3

10.30-11.00 coffee break

Cases with European-wide relevance
(Crimes against humanity committed under the Communist regimes transcending national borders)
Chair: György Schöpflin, MEP (HU)

  • The Berlin Wall shootings as a precedent – Prof. Egils Levits, Judge at the European Court of Justice (LV)
  • Killings along the Iron Curtain – Miroslav Lehký, Ján Langoš Foundation (SK)
  • Forced assimilation of the Turkish minority in Bulgaria in the 1980s – Vasil Kadrinov, Faculty of Philosophy, St. Kliment Ohridski University, Sofia (BG)
  • Mass deportations of civilians and their qualification under international law – Prof. Lauri Mälksoo, University of Tartu (EE)
  • Mass killings, torture, mass graves in the EU – Dr. Jernej Letnar Černič, European Faculty of Law (Sl)


Audio recording (György Schöpflin, Egils Levits, Miroslav Lehký, Vasil Kadrinov, Lauri Mälksoo, Jernej Letnar Černič, discussion); 79 MB, mp3

12.30 – 14.00 lunch

International justice for the Communist crimes
(What could the new institution of international justice look like?)
Chair: Tunne Kelam, MEP (EE)

  • Transnational reinforcement of the prosecution of international crimes – Prof. Dr. Dr. h. c. mult. Albin Eser, Director Emeritus at the Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law, Freiburg, former Judge at the ICTY (DE)
  • Considerations on jurisdictional aspects of the International Criminal CourtRenata Vaišvilienė, LLM, Faculty of Law, Vilnius University (LT)
  • Coming to terms with communist crimes in the EU framework – dawn of a new court? – Prof. Frank Meyer, Institute of Law , University of Zürich (CH)
  • Seeking justice for international crimes abroad: the use of universal jurisdiction – Juergen Schurr, LLM, REDRESS (UK)

Audio recording (Tunne Kelam, Albin Eser, Renata Vaišvilienė, Frank Meyer, Juergen Schurr, discussion); 97.8 MB, mp3

15.30-16.00 coffee break

The next steps toward international justice – panel discussion
(What is needed to establish the new institution of justice? Which political steps to take?)
Chair: Göran Lindblad, President, Platform of European Memory and Conscience (SE)

  • Members of the European Parliament
  • Prof. Jan Rydel, Chair of the Steering committee, European Network Remembrance and Solidarity  (PL)
  • Dr. Gabriel Toggenburg , LLM, Programme Manager – Legal research, equality and citizens’ rights department, Fundamental Rights Agency (AT)
  • Vincent Depaigne, JUST. C.1: Fundamental rights and rights of the child, Directorate General Justice, European Commission (BE)
  • Matevž Pezdirc , LLM, Secretariat to the Network for investigation and prosecution of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes (NL)


Audio recording (Göran Lindblad, Jan Rydel, Gabriel Toggenburg, Vincent Depaigne, Matevž Pezdirc, discussion); 85.5 MB, mp3

Closing remarks
Dr. Hans-Gert Pöttering, MEP (DE), former President of the European Parliament

Audio recording (Hans-Gert Pöttering); 10.8 MB, mp3

Press Doorstep and Reception hosted by László Tőkés, MEP (RO) and Milan Zver, MEP (SI)