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The European Social Charter: 40 Years of Social Rights at European Level


On 18 October, 2001 the Council of Europe celebrated the 40th anniversary of the European Social Charter. It was precisely on 18 October, 1961 that the Committee of Ministers opened the Charter for signature, inviting the member states to adhere to this major treaty, guaranteeing social and economic rights and hence serving as a genuine counterpart to the European Convention on Human Rights which, for its part, guarantees civil and political rights.

In Sofia the event was marked by a ceremony in the Center for Study of Democracy - the host organization for the Council of Europe Information and Documentation Center in Sofia. Ms.Lydia Shouleva, Deputy Prime Minister and Labor and Social Policy Minister, Ms. Elena Poptodorova, Director of Human Rights Department in Foreign Affairs Ministry, members of the Bulgarian Ratification Committee, the Director of National Employment Office Mr. Oleg Choulev, and the leaders of two of the largest trade unions Mr. Zhelyazko Hristov, Mr. Konstantin Trenchev were among the guests of the evening. Bulgaria has ratified the Revised European Social Charter on June 7, 2000.

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