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PACE again dances to chonguri2009-05-04 14:00
On April 29 a hot discussion broke out at the PACE session. European parliamentarians spoke against Russia's stand on recognition of Abkhazia's and South Ossetia's independence. The Russian side too adopted a tough position on the Caucasian issue.
Luc Van den Brande, a PACE expert stated in his report that Russia had not complied with most demands of the Assembly's second resolution "On the consequences of the war between Georgia and Russia". According to VZGLYAD Russia inter alia was expected to withdraw its recognition of "the breakaway regions".
"We can't agree to Russia's military presence in the region and call to stop further militarization and renounce the restriction on humanitarian aid access, - Van den Brande highlighted.
His colleague Mátyás Eörsi was equally categorical. "There is no progress made toward settlement of the situation in South Caucasus, there is even deterioration, - ITAR-TASS quotes. - Russia did not step back on its position maintaining its military contingent in the region and building up its military presence on both sides".
The representatives of Russia calmly took PACE's extremely harsh, at times offending tone. The Russian deputies managed to resist the hail of pseudoarguments emphasizing the Assembly's biased view and outlining Moscow's position. "Russia supports the people of South Ossetia and protects them from further attacks of Georgia - primarily on request of the Ossetians", - VZGLYAD quotes deputy head of the Russian delegation Leonid Slutsky, - the Russian side has complied with the ceasefire agreement (Medvedev-Sarkozy plan - A.G.) and is consistent in its search of a peaceful settlement in the region. But we perceive Abkhazia and South Ossetia as sovereign states. There is no way back". According to Slutsky now PACE must be busy solving humanitarian problems of South Caucasus instead of looking for the guilty in the August conflict. "We must think how to help these people. This is the Council of Europe's main task", - he summed up.
Slutsky's solid speech was a worthy response to the Assembly that while actively promoting the European Union's interests in the Caucasus had turned a blind eye to the crime committed by Saakashvili's regime in August. Willingly or not Van den Brande showed the EU's cards whatever good intentions they were veiled in: "We can't agree to Russia's presence in the region".