Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2011-07-06-Speech-3-547-000"

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"Madam President, ladies and gentlemen, tomorrow, we will once again be adopting a resolution on Russia. It will, in fact, be the fourth resolution on Russia this year, which is a clear indication of the backlog of problems and the difficulties in communication that have built up between the European Union and Russia. Our most recent resolution expressed our concerns and expectations in respect of the forthcoming and presidential elections in Russia. Baroness Ashton, I can only hope that, together with Presidents Barroso and Van Rompuy, you addressed this very clearly in your talks with President Medvedev in Nizhny Novgorod. Yet what effect has that had? What has happened since then? By failing to allow the liberal PARNAS party, the Russian Government has demonstrated that it is clearly hell-bent on backing up its ‘controlled’ democracy and ‘controlled’ justice with ‘controlled’ elections. Even President Medvedev – and you stressed this yourself – has called for competition between political parties, as he has recognised that a governing party without competition will stagnate and then lead the country into stagnation. It is thus in Russia’s own interest for us not to let the Russian Government get away with infringing international obligations, as Russia is a member of the United Nations, the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) and the Council of Europe, all of which should actually guarantee that it complies with all the generally recognised electoral standards. Only in April – and you pointed this out, too – the European Court of Human Rights found that the disbanding of the Republican Party was disproportionate and unlawful and called on Russia to follow up as necessary by 12 July. I believe that the only possible follow-up is for these electoral obstacles to finally be removed and the way cleared for free, real, fair and proper elections. Russia repeatedly demands freedom of travel within the EU, yet freedom of travel without free elections at home is a hamstrung and restricted freedom and leads to emigration rather than modernisation."@en1

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