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MOSCOW, March 23. /TASS/. Russia’s State Duma does not rule out contacts with Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada in the framework of a seminar on conflict settlement in border regions organized by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (PA OSCE), head of the Russian delegation to OSCE, member of Duma’s Committee on Security and Fighting Corruption Nikolay Kovalev told TASS on Monday.
The seminar will be held on March 27-30 in Germany’s Leinsweiler.
"We are ready for such talks," Kovalev said. He lauded the efforts of German and French lawmakers who created conditions for bringing Russian and Ukrainian parliamentarians to the negotiating table.
"The main task of parliamentarian diplomacy is to stop bloodshed. In this sense, we are ready to do everything in our power," Kovalev said. The diplomat stressed he would raise the issue of the situation in Ukraine’s south-east in the framework of topics for discussion at the seminar.
The seminar is not the first attempt of PA OSCE to establish contacts between Russian and Ukrainian parliamentarians. Earlier, at a PA OSCE session in Vienna, the assembly’s President Ilkka Kanerva suggested to create an inter-parliamentarian group on Ukraine and hold a meeting in Copenhagen in the middle of March. Russia’s State Duma confirmed readiness to start dialogue in such format, but Ukraine’s Verkhovna Rada deputies did not fulfill the agreement.