- Issue date: 11/10/2017
- Printing Process: Offset
- Paper: Engomado
- Size of stamp: 40.9 x 28.8 mm
- Sheet effects: 25
- Postal value of the stamps: 0.50 €
- Print run: 210.000
ANNIVERSARIES. SPAIN: 40 YEARS IN THE COUNCIL OF EUROPE.
The Council of Europe was created at the end of the Second World War to protect and safeguard democratic values and the fundamental rights of European citizens.
The organisation was created in 1949, after the signing of the Treaty of London, consisting at the time of Belgium, France, Luxembourg, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom.
Other countries were gradually incorporated and today's Council of Europe now consists of 47 states.
Spain joined the Council forty years ago, on 24 November 1977. The country had been going through a process of political transition at the time, so its incorporation represented a giant step in support of democracy.
Spain and Europe were both aware that their respective futures depended on one another, even though democracy had only just returned to Spain. Spain may not have had a constitution yet in force, but it did have considerable hope and yearning for a better future.
The Council’s 47 member states fight to protect a judicial space with basic guarantees, which can be summed in three principles: defence of human rights, pluralistic democracy, and rule of law.
An important part of this institutional framework is the European Court of Human Rights, whose rulings must be complied with by every State signatory to the European Convention on Human Rights. The Court’s judges have moral and legal authority and must act with equanimity and justice.
Even so, the organisation is not just confined to legal and political issues; given the unifying factor of culture as an element of social cohesion, it also promotes initiatives that safeguard and disseminate the cultural heritage of its member states.
The stamp features an illustration of Europe on a blue background and a logo commemorating Spain’s forty years in the Council of Europe.