Kyiv, February 2, 2015 – Throughout the last couple of days, Russian delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe has repeatedly used disgraceful tricks and outright lies while talking about the potential release of Nadiya Savchenko, Ukrainian MP and member of the Ukrainian delegation to PACE, in exchange for the recovery of Russia’s rights in the organization. Volodymyr Aryev, head of the Ukrainian delegation and vice-president of PACE, and Georgiy Lohvinsky, member of the Ukrainian delegation, told this during the press-briefing at Ukraine Crisis Media Center. “Every PACE delegate, including Nadiya Savchenko, is immune to sanctions such as arrest or incarceration. Russia has violated this principle yet again,” Mr. Aryev said. He emphasized that Ukraine does not try to broker a deal about the fate of Nadiya Savchenko, and insists that she has to be released immediately.
“For the first time in many years, Ukrainian delegation was not divided on representatives of the ruling party and the opposition. We were united by the sole purpose – to prevent the restoration of Russia’s voting rights and other privileges in PACE,” Mr. Aryev said. Despite the traditionally strong Russian lobby and the involvement of Sergey Naryshkin, Speaker of the Russian Parliament, PACE adopted a resolution that condemned Russian intervention to Ukraine, its support for pro-Russian militants in Donbas and the so-called “humanitarian convoys” that are not inspected by the International Committee of the Red Cross.
Ukrainian delegates highlighted that the issue of stripping Russia from its voting rights is important not only for Ukraine but for the entire democratic community. “Russia wants to return to PACE to show that its crimes in Moldova, Georgia and Ukraine are left with impunity. But this time we succeeded and justice and democratic principles have prevailed,” Georgiy Lohvinsky concluded.