General Assembly of Churches’ Commission for Migrants in Europe (CCME). Prague, 21-25/06/2017.

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The General Assembly of the Commission of Churches’ for Μigrants in Europe (CCME) was held from 21 to 25 June 2017 in Prague.

President Dr. Victoria Kamondji and Secretary-General Doris Peschke presented their reports to the General Assembly for 2014-2017. A greeting message was read by CEC’s General Secretary Fr. Heikki Huttunen on behalf of CEC’s President Bishop Christopher Hill. The members of the General Assembly approved the agenda of the General Assembly while five new candidate member churches were also accepted as full members with voting rights.

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The members of the Executive Committee informed the General Assembly’s members about the activities and programs that were implemented for 2014-2017. A detailed report on the Commission's finances for years 2014-2016 was presented by Dr. Thorsten Leisser, treasurer of CCME, which was voted by the members unanimously.

The General Assembly’s members had long discussions on the topics of: future initiatives and activities for years 2018-2020, the merging procedure with CEC in the view of the upcoming CEC’s General Assembly in Novi Sad in 2018 and finally with the budget for the years until 2020. After long discussions, interventions and amendments to the proposed documents, they were all unanimously voted.

The General Assembly’s members express their gratitude the Executive Committee of period 2014-2016 for its contribution and the members were discharged. A new Executive Committee was elected by the General Assembly for the period 2017-2019. The new members are the following: Chairman Mr. Lemma Desta, Vice President Mrs. Efthalia Pappa, Treasurer Mr. Apostle Adejare Oyewole and members Dr. David Bradwell, Mrs. Sabine Dressler, Mrs. Dana Gavril, Mrs. Dora Kanizsai, Dr. Katalina Tahaafe, Mr. Andreas Aarlfo on behalf of CEC, and as substitutes fr. Christian Popescu and Mrs. Talvikki Ahonen.

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Finally, the General Assembly discussed the joint statement, which was unanimously adopted and published. Among other things, it was stressed that particular attention must be paid to: The opening of safe passage for those in greatest need, in order to prevent the continuing catastrophic loss of human life as people desperately try to seek sanctuary in Europe, to the protection and expansion of swift family reunification; as Churches we affirm that family life is a fundamental human right and is essential for the integration of a newcomer and finally to the situation of persons living in Europe not granted a permit who cannot return to their country of origin. They deserve to have their fundamental rights respected and guaranteed at all times.

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