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OSCE PA president to visit Moscow for talks with Russia’s lower house speaker

February 10, 2015, 15:21 UTC+3 MOSCOW
The sides are expected to focus on the issues that will be discussed at the Assembly’s session in Vienna in late February
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MOSCOW, February 10. /TASS/. OSCE Parliamentary Assembly President Ilkka Kanerva is due to visit Moscow on Thursday to meet with the speaker of the Russian lower house of parliament, the State Duma, Sergey Naryshkin, a senior Russian lawmaker Alexei Pushkov has said.

Kanerva will also meet with some members of the Russian delegation in the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. The sides are expected to focus on the issues that will be discussed at the Assembly’s session in Vienna in late February, said Pushkov, who heads the State Duma foreign affairs committee.

The parties will in particular talk the crisis in eastern Ukraine and the issue of the inter-parliamentary contact group of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly on Ukraine. The decision to create this contact group was taken at the OSCE PA session in Baku, Azerbaijan, but was blocked this fall due to the efforts of Ukraine, Poland and the US, the lawmaker said.

The office of the State Duma speaker confirmed to TASS on Tuesday that such a meeting is planned and preparations are underway.

Last year, Naryshkin and Kanerva held several meetings. In October, both of them attended the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly session in Geneva that focused on security issues in Europe.

The OSCE PA contact group on Ukraine, created at Russia’s initiative, was initially expected to meet on the sidelines of the session. However, the meeting was postponed due to Kiev’s refusal to participate.

In September 2014, Kanerva visited Moscow where he met also with Naryshkin. The sides in particular discussed the ways of resolving the conflict in eastern Ukraine.

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