The European Commission for Democracy through Law, also known as the Venice Commission, was established in 1990 pursuant to a Partial Agreement of the Council of Europe. It is a consultative body which co-operates with member states of the Council of Europe and with non-member states.
It is composed of independent experts in the fields of law and political science whose main tasks are the following:
-to help new Central and Eastern Europe democracies to set up new political and legal infrastructures;
-to reinforce existing democratic structures;
-to promote and strengthen principles and institutions which represent the bases of true democracy.
The activities of the Venice Commission comprise, inter alia, research, seminars and legal opinions on issues of constitutional reform, on draft constitutional charters, electoral laws and the protection of minorities, as well as the collection and dissemination of case-law in matters of constitutional law from Constitutional Courts and other courts throughout Europe.