The Council of Europe is the oldest pan-European organisation, founded on 5 May 1949. The aim of this organisation, gathering 47 member states and five observer countries, is to promote democracy, protection of human rights and the rule of law.
On 11 May 2007, Montenegro became a full member of the Council of Europe by the decision of the Council of Ministers of the Council of Europe,
Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) is the parliamentary dimension of this organisation. The Assembly held the first session on 10 August 1949. Since its foundation, it has been a driving force and initiator of the most important activities of the Council of Europe, including the adoption of the European Convention on Human Rights.
PACE gathers representatives of national parliaments of 47 Council of Europe member states (324 members and 324 substitute members). Each member state, depending of the number of citizens, has from two to 18 representatives, which reflects the political spectrum of their national parliament.
Sessions of the parliamentary Assembly take place four times a year in Strasbourg, while between the sessions meetings of the working bodies are held. The Assembly addresses the topics in the field promotion and protection of human rights and democracy, honouring of obligations by member states, fight against terrorism, regional crises, position of refugees and immigrants, intercultural and interreligious dialogue and social cohesion.
Members of the PACE, in addition to plenum, participate in the work of the working bodies, as well as in observation missions that monitor election process in Council of Europe member states. PACE elects judges of the European Court for Human Rights and Commissioner for Human Rights, while members of the Parliament elect Secretary General and Deputy Secretary General of the Council of Europe.
The Statute of the Council of Europe stipulates that Montenegro has a right on three representatives and three substitute members in the Parliamentary Assembly.