MOSCOW, June 29. /TASS/. The new visit to Russia of Pedro Agramunt, the president of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), signals the intention of the organization’s leadership to mend relations with Moscow, Russia’s State Duma Speaker Sergey Naryshkin said.
"Your second visit to us over the past one and a half month confirms the intention of the new PACE leadership with you as its head to normalize relations with the Russian delegation," Naryshkin said.
Agramunt, who was elected as PACE’s chief this January, is taking part in the session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation (PABSEC) in Moscow as an observer.
The PACE president attended the session of the Interparliamentary Assembly of the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) in St. Petersburg in May.
Russia’s delegation at PACE was deprived of its key rights in April 2014 over developments in Ukraine and Crimea’s reunification with Russia.
PACE voted twice on a possibility of restoring the Russian delegation’s powers but the restrictions remain in force. Russia is stripped of the right to vote and take part in the PACE governing bodies and its monitoring activities.
Owing to these restrictions, the Russian delegation suspended its participation in the PACE work until late 2015. The leadership of the Russian delegation has repeatedly said it would return to PACE only if all the sanctions were lifted. In January 2016, Russia refused to bid for confirming its powers this year.