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MOSCOW, February 5. /TASS/. The Council of Europe (CE) is capable of making unpoliticized decisions and unbiased reports, Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Alexey Meshkov said on Friday.
"I would like to stress that the Council of Europe is a multifunctional organization which possesses high expert potential that often allows to make competent and unpoliticized decisions," Meshkov told a roundtable "20 years of Russia’s membership in Council of Europe: results and prospects".
The diplomat noted in particular preparations of the report by international consultative group set up on initiative of CE Secretary General Thorbjorn Jagland on investigation of the tragedy in Odessa on 2 May 2014.
The report was published in November 2015. "The report confirmed the conclusions we made a long time ago. The pseudo-investigation conducted by Ukrainian authorities is not in line with European Convention on Human Rights," Meshkov noted.
The diplomat reminded that Russia joined 60 out of 219 CE conventions over the time of its membership in the organization. Meshkov added that joining CE helped Russia participate in developing conventions that "become not only political declarations but also part of national laws."
"I would answer ‘yes’ to a direct question on whether we should have joined the Council of Europe 20 years ago. First of all, because Article 1 of the Statute of the Council of Europe states that all issues excluding national defense are in its competence. The potential of this organization is multi-faceted - from human rights to fighting terrorism," the diplomat went on.
"This choice was not forced on us from outside," he added. "Russia joined those documents that it found interesting," Meshkov said.