19:05 GMT07 July 2020
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    The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) and Russia have outlined three steps Moscow should take in order to return to a “stronger dialogue” with the Assembly in January 2016, the head of the PACE monitoring committee told Sputnik on Wednesday.

    STRASBOURG (Sputnik), Daria Chernyshova — The summer session of PACE is currently underway in Strasbourg. Russia has abstained from participating in the assembly until 2016 after the Council of Europe's consultative body voted in January to prolong its restrictions on Russia's right to vote, citing a lack of improvement in the crisis in Ukraine.

    According to Stefan Schennach, the head of the PACE monitoring committee, meeting with the Russian side a week ago in Belgrade, Moscow made proposals regarding "three most important steps," put by PACE on the table prior to the meeting, so that "in January a stronger dialogue can come back" between Russia and the Assembly.

    The three points, mentioned by Schennach in the PACE delegation’s visit to Crimea, include an opportunity to see Ukrainian national Nadezhda Savchenko, accused by Moscow of assisting in the killing of Russian reporters in eastern Ukraine and held in pretrial detention in Russia, and setting up a committee comprised of heads of Russian delegation to PACE, Ukraine's delegation and Anne Brasseur, the PACE president.

    The lawmaker said that PACE will consider Russia's offers in the near future.

    The Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) adopted a resolution on Wednesday not to annul the credentials of the Russian delegation, noting that the sanctions stripping Russia of its voting rights remained in place.

    Alexei Pushkov, the long-time head of Russia’s delegation to PACE, stated earlier in June that the Russian delegation would continue refraining from PACE sessions, if it is stripped of voting powers again in January 2016.


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