In June, the Council of Europe will elect its Secretary General.
The Secretary General is the public figurehead of the Council of Europe. He heads the secretariat and is – on behalf of the Committee of Ministers – responsible for the overall coordination, the strategic planning, the work programme and the budget of the organisation.
The Secretary General is elected by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe for a once renewable five-year term of office. So far, the only female Secretary General of the Council of Europe was Catherine Lalumière from France (1989-1994).
In order to increase the visibility of the Council of Europe, candidates with a high-profile at European level are being preferred.
The Committee of Ministers has nominated two candidates for election by the Parliamentary Assembly: The sitting Secretary General, Mr. Thorbjørn Jagland from Norway, and the former German Minister of Justice, Mrs. Sabine Leutheusser-Schnarrenberger.