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MOSCOW, March 27. /ITAR-TASS/. Russia's delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) has pledged to defend the country's policy on Crimea in the face of possible expulsion from the forum.
Russian upper house senator Igor Morozov warned that if PACE stripped Russian representatives of membership over the situation in Ukraine, the Russian side would “stop political activity in Europe and re-orient towards the Asian vector”.
This would lose the Council of Europe a major partner with which it had undertaken significant projects for 18 years and had engaged in political discussions on which points of coincidence had always been found, Morozov said.
Under these circumstances, “Russia will not hurry to get back within the platform”, he said, noting that “the Council of Europe survived only thanks to Russia".
"Without Russia, it is not interesting for the European Union to contact the Council of Europe. Without Russia, PACE would practically become an analogue of the European Parliament," he said, adding that "Parliamentarians should give it a second thought."
"Even if we understand that the decision is made to expel Russia from the organization, we will be fighting to the very end and speak without paying attention to hissing and jeers, bringing our position to their attention, speaking about international precedents that already exist in contemporary history, stressing what the policy the EU has trialed in Ukraine can lead to,” Morozov said.