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Worse case scenario: Syrian events affect all Europe

October 01, 2013, 18:29 UTC+3

Russian State Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin: the most dangerous thing in this situation is to keep aloof

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Photo ITAR-TASS/ Mikhail Pochuev

Photo ITAR-TASS/ Mikhail Pochuev

MOSCOW, October 1 (Itar-Tass) - Under the worst case scenario, developments in Syria might affect all European countries, Russian State Duma speaker Sergei Naryshkin said at a session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE).

The speaker said EU parliamentarians were meeting “at a dramatic moment”. “Although the events in Syria take place away from Europe, their course and the background show that present-day threats to peace are directly connected with disregard for the law and fundamental principles of the world order, established exactly here, on our continent, in Europe,” he said.

“Under the worst case scenario, the consequences may affect all our countries,” the speaker of the lower house warned. “That is why the most dangerous thing in this situation is to keep aloof, keep silence and demonstrate indifference,” the politician said.

“All European countries know well what indifference and compromises lead to,” he continued. “When Europe slid into WWI, its casualties went into millions, and into dozens of millions in WWII,” he said. “And we know: today the stance of some European countries has happened to be not only firm, but also heard,” he said, referring to the British parliament that banned “its government from participating in an air strike on Syria”.

“Russian president’s initiative on the settlement of the Syrian situation has received broad support and began to be implemented, you know about the results of a vote on a relevant resolution of the UN Security Council,” he said. “Centuries-long commitment of Europe to humanitarian values, on which its present law and principles of development are based, has had its role in that,” he said.

“You may ask me why I am speaking about this now. Not least because even the events of WWII are fading from memory, and attempts are made to ‘retouch’ its lessons, distorting the reasons and the essence of the most awful tragedy of the 20th century,” he said.

The speaker said “we have no right to turn a blind eye to the conduct that does not fit into rules of law and all the more moral rules”. With that in view he pointed to the fact that early in September Russian parliamentarians initiated a meeting with American colleagues to discuss the situation around Syria. “But as you know, they refused,” he said, adding that “they prefer to make decisions without listening to other arguments”. “This is an unprecedented occurrence for the parliamentary practice,” he added.

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