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Russia hopes OSCE Parliamentary Assembly will focus on stopping Ukraine bloodshed

February 18, 2015, 9:29 UTC+3

The situation in Ukraine and settlement of the conflict in south-east will be key issues at the session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, which opens in Vienna on Wednesday, February 18

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© AP Photo/Ronald Zak

VIENNA, February 18. /TASS/. Moscow hopes that the dialogue at the opening OSCE Parliamentary Assembly session will be constructive in an effort to bring the positions of Russian and European parliamentarians closer, the head of the Russian delegation said on Wednesday.

"In the information war, the public opinion in many countries is not in favor of Russia," Nikolay Kovalyov said, thus the Russian delegation should "explain that Russia is for complying with the international law and the Helsinki agreements." More people in Europe now start realising the damage from the Ukrainian crisis, he said.

"Now we can see it first of all from understanding of [Germany’s Chancellor Angela] Merkel and [France’s President Francois] Hollande what development of the conflict in Ukraine may cause," Kovalyov said.

"In other words, all parliamentarians should find a solution how to stop the bloodshed and killing of people," he said adding "it is a domestic Ukrainian conflict, but it may develop into another hot spot in Europe."

Russian representatives are ready for a dialogue with members of the Ukrainian delegation as part of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly, including on convening an Inter-parliamentary contact group on Ukraine.

Kovalyov said Russian parliamentarians have had a meeting and agreed on cooperation and exchange of views with the previous Ukrainian delegation, but "now the delegation is all new, and we shall be working with the new members."

Russia puts high hopes on the OSCE PA in the development of the inter-parliamentary diplomacy and its contribution in settlement of the Ukrainian conflict.

As part of the OSCE PA platform, an inter-parliamentary contact group on Ukraine was established last year at the initiative of speaker of the Russian State Duma (lower house of parliament) Sergey Naryshkin, but its activities were disrupted by the US and Ukrainian sides.

At the February 12 meeting in Moscow with OSCE PA’s President Ilkka Kanerva, Naryshkin expressed hope that the group could begin working and make its parliamentary contribution in settlement of the Ukrainian crisis.

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