Suriname to host 24th ACP-EU Joint Parliamentary Assembly. Michael Gahler MEP
Today, parliamentarians from African, Caribbean and Pacific States and the European Parliament decided to hold the next session of the ACP-EU Parliamentary Assembly in Paramaribo, the capital of Suriname.
Suriname has been under discussion for a long time as a potential venue due to the fact that its President was convicted in the Netherlands for cocaine trafficking and sentenced to 11 years' imprisonment.
EPP Group Member Michael Gahler MEP said: "Considering the President's conviction in the Netherlands as well as the controversial amnesty law for his murder trial for the 'December killings' in 1982, the EPP Group supported the decision to meet in Suriname provided that no meetings with the President are scheduled in the formal programme."
"Meeting in Suriname is one thing, meeting its President is another thing. This would be interpreted as an act of legitimisation and respect for Mr Bouterse and in our view, he, as a convicted drugs-trafficker and a suspected murderer, does not deserve this."