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    PACE Monitoring Committee May Send Team to Crimea

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    According to the head of the PACE monitoring committee, a mission to Crimea may be send soon to investigate the humanitarian situation in the region.

    STRASBOURG, January 28 (Sputnik) — The monitoring committee of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) may send a team to Crimea to investigate the humanitarian situation in the region if the budget for the mission is approved, the head of the committee told Sputnik on Wednesday.

    "The Russians must give us a possibility to enter [Crimea]… Very soon, we are not talking about the next few months, very very soon. Tomorrow I will put it for voting that there is a budget to go," Stefan Schennach said ahead of the PACE plenary sitting debating Russian credentials.

    "I will send a team to Crimea that they make report… about the humanitarian and human rights situation in Crimea," he told Sputnik.

    On Tuesday, an Austrian PACE member called for a new referendum in Crimea to confirm that its reunification with Russia was a democratic choice made by local residents.

    Crimea reunited with Russia in March 2014 following a referendum with 96 percent of voters were in favor of joining Russia. The move was condemned as "illegal annexation" by Western countries repeatedly stressing that the human rights situation in Crimea deteriorated following the reunification.

    In light of the situation with Crimea, the United States, the European Union and a number of other countries imposed a series of sanctions against Moscow. The latest restrictions, imposed in December 2014, specifically target Crimea and include new sanctions against certain individuals and entities operating in the region. Russia was also stripped of its voting credentials in PACE.

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    Tags:
    human rights, humanitarian situation, PACE, Russia, Crimea
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