22 September 2017
Moscow: 09:13
London: 07:13

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PRESS RELEASES AND NEWS

10.07.2017

Comment by the Information and Press Department on reasons for suspending the payment of Russia’s contribution to the Council of Europe

In light of foreign and Russian media comments on the June 30 Statement by the Foreign Ministry Concerning the Suspension of Payment of Russia’s Contribution to the Council of Europe for 2017, we have decided to publish an explanation.

The Russian delegation at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has been deprived of a substantial part of their credentials by PACE decisions of April 10, 2014 and January 28, 2015 as “punishment” for recognising the results of the referendum on Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
The following rights of the Russian delegation have been suspended: the voting rights; the right to be represented in the assembly’s leading bodies (the Bureau, the Presidential Committee and the Standing Committee), the right to be appointed rapporteur; the right to be member of an ad hoc committee on observation of elections; the right to represent the Assembly in Council of Europe bodies as well as external institutions and organisations, both institutionally and on an occasional basis.
There is no sense in any delegation working at PACE without these credentials. Therefore, there is no substance to the statements to the effect that the Russian delegation has voluntarily walked out of the assembly.
However, the Russian Federation continues its meaningful work in the Council of Europe including implementation of its obligations under the conventions to which it is a party, as the June 30 Statement says.
The federal executive agencies of the Russian Federation are working towards accession to a number of other Council of Europe conventions, in the continuing bid to try to develop a common European legal space from the Atlantic to the Pacific based on the Council of Europe legislation as one of the foundations for equal and mutually beneficial cooperation between European countries.
This is why Russia is concerned about the increasingly frequent use of the language of hate and hostility and the flagrant disregard for the rule of law and democracy at PACE.
Something must be done to prevent a situation where the governments of the council member states that faithfully comply with the assembly’s decision become hostage to false stereotypes and goals that lead to confrontation. We firmly believe that the assembly as the consultative body of the Council of Europe does not have the right or mandate for this.
In our opinion, the crisis within PACE could be overcome by amending its Rules of Procedure as soon as possible with a provision under which the elected deputies’ credentials can be only suspended by their electorate at the next elections.
The decision to suspend the payment of Russia’s contribution to the Council of Europe for 2017 is evidence of our deep concern over the possible growth of crisis within the council because of the confrontational policies of some PACE members.
Russia is urging all responsible members of governments and parliaments, the political parties and civil societies of the Council of Europe’s member states to prevent the spread of this crisis from PACE to the other council bodies.
The Russian Federation wants the Council of Europe to be strong and effective and believes that the other council members want the same.




LATEST EVENTS

20.09.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's opening remarks during talks with President of Cyprus Nicos Anastasiades, New York, September 19, 2017

Once again, I would like to thank you for the hospitality you showed us several months ago. We also look forward to your visit.


20.09.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks during talks with Minister of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Hungary Peter Szijjarto, New York, September 19, 2017

As you know, we have always advocated the unity of the European Union, so we wish you all the best.


20.09.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov's opening remarks during talks with President of Serbia Aleksandar Vucic, New York, September 19, 2017

We value any opportunity to hear your views on developments in the region, as well as to coordinate our further steps regarding the issues of concern to us in the interests of stability in the Balkans and the development of the region’s countries in accordance with the will of their people.


20.09.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s opening remarks during talks with President of Uganda Yoweri Museveni, New York, September 19, 2017

Sorry for a small delay. Very nice to see you again. We believe that our dialogue is important. After your visit five years ago, this would be a good occasion to check where we are and what we get to do together to promote our very good relations and friendship.


20.09.2017 - Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s interview with TASS and The Associated Press, New York, September 20, 2017

Question (in English): After your meeting with Secretary Tillerson, how would you evaluate the relationship with the United States? And has Russia given up on hopes of a significant improvement under the Trump administration? Sergey Lavrov (in English): The relations are at a very difficult and a very low point, which is the legacy of the Obama administration. We certainly noted what President Trump was saying when he was running for president about the relations with Russia and what he continues to say. Basically, that he wants to have good relations with Russia, understanding that this would be in the American interests and the interests of solving quite a number of important and most acute world problems. And what I feel talking to Rex Tillerson is that this is the position of the administration. They are not happy with the current state of relations, and we are not happy at all. And I believe that the understanding is that we have to accept the reality which was created, as I said, by the spiral of unfriendly steps started by the Obama administration, but this reality is with us. And being responsible people, I believe the Russian Government and the US administration should exercise this responsibility in addressing the bilateral links as well as international issues. We are not yet at a point where this would become a sustained trend but understanding of the need to move in this direction is present, in my opinion.


19.09.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s meeting with Under-Secretary-General of the UN Counter-Terrorism Office Vladimir Voronkov

On September 18, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov met with Under-Secretary-General of the UN Counter-Terrorism Office Vladimir Voronkov on the sidelines of the General Debate of the 72nd UN General Assembly in New York.


18.09.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson

On September 16, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov had a telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the initiative of the US side.


18.09.2017 - Joint statement by Iran, Russia and Turkey on the International Meeting on Syria in Astana 14-15 September 2017

reaffirming their strong commitment to the sovereignty, independence, unity and territorial integrity of the Syrian Arab Republic; guided by the provisions of UNSC resolution 2254 (2015);


15.09.2017 - Press release on Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov’s telephone conversation with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson

On September 14, Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov spoke by phone with US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson at the US initiative.


15.09.2017 - Press release on Alaska delegation’s visit to Russia

On September 4-10, Russia was visited by a group of public figures from Alaska, including representatives of the academic community and non-governmental organisations, members of the Alaska Historical Society and prominent figures of the autocephalous Orthodox Church in America.



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