MOSCOW, July 9. /TASS/. Russia is set to continue cooperation with the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (PA OSCE) in spite of the incident linked to the Russian delegation’s participation in the session held in Helsinki in recent days, Speaker of the Federation Council upper house Valentina Matviyenko told the Russian Rossiya 24 television on Thursday.
"Russia is a full-fledged and fully-legitimate participant of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly," Matviyenko said underscoring that Russia has always worked at the OSCE PA floor and has had a high opinion of this organisation and of its capabilities.
"They are not to be blamed in this case for acting in such a way with the Russian delegation [barring its entry to the country]," she said noting that OSCE PA President Ilkka Kanerva had expressed "his most serious concerns" over the incident.
So Russia is set to "continue cooperation with the Parliamentary Assembly," she said.
"The voice of Russia should be heard there," the Federation Council speaker said. "It is impossible to ensure adequate European security - equal and indivisible for all nations - without Russia," she said.
Last week Finland made a decision not to issue visas for Speaker of Russia’s State Duma lower house Sergey Naryshkin and another five Russian nationals who were due to take part in the OSCE PA session on July 5 to 9. The Finnish foreign ministry explained that the Russian nationals were on the European Union’s sanctions list. Following the entry denial, the Russian delegation announced it would not go to Helsinki.
"We consider it impermissible to lower the level of Russian representation at the session of the Parliamentary Assembly, a very important session devoted to the 40th anniversary of adopting the Helsinki Final Act," Naryshkin, who planned to head the Russian delegation, said.