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C 196/78 EN Official Journal of the European Communities 22. 6.

98

To make tax avoidance more difficult, the Commission may require tenderers to supply the appropriate proof. In
the case of PHARE, the Commission insists that consultants on the short lists must have their registered office
either in a Member State or in a recipient country. Specific investigations are carried out if a tenderer or
contractor is suspected of having connections with organisations considered to be illegal and the findings are
passed on to the Commission.

Details of the four contracts which exceeded ECU 50 000 have been sent direct to the Honourable Member and to
Parliament’s Secretariat.

(1) OJ L 375, 23.12.1989.


(2) OJ L 356, 31.12.1977.
(3) OJ L 209, 24. 7.1992.

(98/C 196/107) WRITTEN QUESTION E-4106/97


by Konstantinos Hatzidakis (PPE) to the Commission
(16 January 1998)

Subject: Progress in realizing Community initiatives and Cohesion Fund projects in Greece

Can the Commission provide comparative analytical tables showing progress to date in realizing Community
initiatives and Cohesion Fund projects for each Member State?

Answer given by Mrs Wulf-Mathies on behalf of the Commission


(6 March 1998)

Because of the length of the answer, which includes a number of tables, the Commission is sending it direct to the
Honourable Member and to Parliament’s Secretariat.

(98/C 196/108) WRITTEN QUESTION E-4107/97


by Joan Vallvé (ELDR) to the Commission
(16 January 1998)

Subject: Use of refrigerating services in fruit-processing cross-border areas

In fruit-producing areas there can be (according to the size of the harvest) a shortage of refrigerating capacity on
one side of the border and a surplus on the other. On occasions this means that farmers on one side of the border
need to hire such capacity from the neighbouring country.

Is the Commission planning any action to facilitate cross-border cooperation in the processing and marketing of
agricultural produce?

Answer given by Mr Fischler on behalf of the Commission


(18 February 1998)

The reform of the fruit and vegetable market organisations introduced by Council Regulation (EC) No 2200/96 of
28 October 1996 (1) lays down measures intended to cope with the situation described by the Honourable
Member.

Producer organisations may implement operational programmes with a view to improving product quality and
developing commercial value. To this end, coldstores in another Member State can be rented. Under the
conditions of the single market, products can be processed and marketed without territorial restriction.
22. 6. 98 EN Official Journal of the European Communities C 196/79

The operational programmes are 50%-financed by the Community and if a programme is presented by several
Community producer organisations operating in separate Member States for cross-border activities, the rate of
funding is increased to 60% of actual expenditure.

(1) OJ L 297, 21.11.1996.

(98/C 196/109) WRITTEN QUESTION E-4108/97


by Gianfranco Dell’Alba (ARE) to the Commission
(16 January 1998)

Subject: Trial for the killing of the Italian Giacomo Turra in Colombia on 3 September 1995

15 December 1997 will see the start of the court-martial at the Military Tribunal in Cartagena, Colombia, which
will finally try 5 policemen charged with the manslaughter of the European citizen Giacomo Turra who died
there at the age of 24.

After various attempts by the Colombian authorities to have it shelved, the trial is to take place thanks to the
intervention not only of the Italian Government but also of numerous international human rights organizations.

The Commission recently granted Colombia $5 million in humanitarian aid in return for an undertaking to
improve compliance with human rights, and the trial is undoubtedly important proof of the Colombian state’s
determination to combat the impunity with which it is characterized.

Does the Commission not think it would be an idea to take advantage of the opportunity to send observers to the
trial to ascertain that the legal proceedings respect human rights?

Answer given by Mr Marı́n on behalf of the Commission


(4 February 1998)

The Commission is watching with some concern the human rights situation in Colombia, which remains
unsatisfactory on the whole. It will be keeping a close eye on the trial of Mr Turra’s alleged killers through its
delegation in Bogotá, in coordination with the Member States’ diplomatic representations there.

The Commission assigns top priority to initiatives aimed at strengthening the machinery for protecting human
rights in Colombia and to monitoring infringements of those rights. That aim is achieved in three ways: by
beefing up the presence of the international community (additional funding of the international observer team
made available to the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights and responsible for monitoring the
human rights situation throughout the country); by financing initiatives for local NGOs working in the field of
democracy and human rights; and through structural aid for the administration of justice.

As for the humanitarian aid programme referred to by the Honourable Member, it should be stressed that under
the terms of Council Regulation (EC) No 1257/96 of 20 June 1996 concerning humanitarian aid (1), such aid,
given its objective, is not guided by or subject to political considerations.

The other forms of aid Colombia receives from the Commission are largely targeted at the most disadvantaged
sections of the population. The Commission enlists the help of a large number of local and international NGOs in
implementing its aid.

It should be stressed that Colombia is signatory to a regional cooperation agreement with the Community which
subjects Community aid to observance of human rights.

(1) OJ L 163, 2.7.1996.