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Moscow City Court finds denial to register PARNAS lawful

March 20, 2012, 11:07 UTC+3

The Zamoskvoretsky District Court of Moscow found the decision of the ministry lawful

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MOSCOW, March 20 (Itar-Tass) —— The Moscow City Court has found the denial to register the opposition People’s Freedom Party (PARNAS) lawful. Thus, the appeal of the party was turned down.

The Justice Ministry turned down to register PARNAS earlier. The Zamoskvoretsky District Court of Moscow found the decision of the ministry lawful.

“The cassation penal ruled that the August 11 verdict of the Zamoskvoretsky District Court and an additional decision as of November 3 will remain unchanged and turned down the cassation appeals,” the judge made public the verdict.

“The political reform is ‘in action’,” secretary of the PARNAS federal political council Konstantin Merzlikin gave sceptical comments on the verdict of the Moscow City Court.

During the court session he was seeking to convince the cassation penal that there were no reasons for the denial to register the party. Merzlikin recalled that the trial for the Justice Ministry is a matter of state services, so, the ministry had to help to overcome probable shortcomings if necessary.

“You realize it perfectly in what situation your issue is being tried. The society demands political changes. If the Justice Ministry does not understand the political provisions and the spirit of the Constitution this is its problem,” the politician said.

The Justice Ministry asked to turn down the appeal of the party in the court.

Meanwhile, on Monday, Justice Minister Alexander Konovalov noted that he hopes the court will settle the problem of PARNAS registration on Tuesday.

Even despite the position of the court the party have some chances for an official registration after the parliament approves the amendments introduced by Russian President Dmitry Medvedev to liberalize the political legislation.

In late December 2011 the president submitted the relevant bills in the State Duma. A bill envisages more lenient requirements to the party registration. Starting from January 1, 2013, under the bill a political party should number at least 500 members (now at least 40,000 members), the requirement to the minimal number of members of the party in its regional offices is cancelled.

The People’s Freedom Party was founded in December 2010. Mikhail Kasyanov, Boris Nemtsov, Vladimir Milov and Vladimir Ryzhkov co-chair the party. The documents for registration were filed in late May 2011. At that moment PARNAS had 53 regional offices, their numerical strength reaches more than 46,000 people. The Russian Justice Ministry denied the registration to the party in June, because the party charter “contains the provisions, which contradict the law on political parties or other federal laws.” Meanwhile, underage people and dead people were found in the PARNAS list.

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