Ukrainian Foreign Minister Pavlo Klimkin has said the Council of Europe is on the verge of ensuring the return of Russians to PACE without Russia's fulfilling the requirements of the resolutions adopted in response to the aggression against Ukraine.
"Over the past four years, there has been not a single reason to say that Russia decided to stop the aggression. The international pressure on the Russian Federation at least remains unchanged due to this fact, while in a number of areas it increases," he wrote on Facebook.
"And only in one place we have a real risk of reducing this pressure in the near future – this is the Council of Europe. The outpost of European values and principles is on the verge of granting an indulgence to Russia and fulfilling its absurd demand, i.e. to ensure Russia's return to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe without fulfilling the requirements of the resolutions of this authoritative body adopted in response to the Russian aggression against Ukraine," Klimkin said.
"Moreover, we see attempts at a perverted interpretation of the PACE decisions regarding the Russian aggressor. Certain forces quite seriously insist and artificially bring the legal basis toward the fact that the Assembly exceeded its authority by applying sanctions against Russia in 2014-2015. I have one question for them: since when did the Council of Europe begin to be guided by the phrase 'give me a position and I will find an international lawyer who will justify it?'" he said.
Klimkin thanked the Verkhovna Rada for the statement on the situation in the PACE, but noted that was not enough.
"Let's make the most of contacts with other parliamentarians to convince everyone. Not 'to talk', not 'to exchange arguments', but to get through and convince. At the same time, I urge you to work very closely with our diplomats. In the end, parliamentary diplomacy is the realm of parliamentarians, and they own the 'first violin' here," Klimkin said.
According to him, "it is important to speak not only with those who support Ukraine, but also with those who lobby for completely different, not always pleasant positions for us."