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Finland wants dialogue with Russia — president

July 06, 2015, 13:42 UTC+3 HELSINKI
Bad relations between Russia and the West have an impact on Finland, that is why Helsinki is interested in maintaining the best possible relations with Moscow, president Sauli Niinisto says
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President of FInland Sauli Niinisto

President of FInland Sauli Niinisto

© ITAR-TASS/Alexey Druzhinin

HELSINKI, July 6. /TASS/. Finland is interested in dialogue with Russia, President Sauli Niinisto told a plenary session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly on Monday.

Niinisto noted that Helsinki is making an effort to continue the dialogue between Moscow and the West. "We should remember that Finland is a member of the EU, 'another camp'. And the role of a mediator does not entirely suit it. But bad relations between Russia and the West have an impact on all of us, and Finland in particular. That is why we are interested in maintaining the best possible relations with Russia. This is exactly the role I have always thought I have," Niinisto said.

He also admitted that "tensions between the Russian Federation and the West have significantly intensified". "This has unfortunately influenced our meeting today. Nobody will benefit from this situation and such relations. We need to prevent it from getting worse. And primarily stop the violence in Ukraine," the president said.

Earlier Finland denied entry to Speaker of the Russian State Duma Sergey Naryshkin and five more Russian citizens who had planned to take part in the session of the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly. The country’s Foreign Ministry said that all of them were on the list of individuals sanctioned by the EU. Following the decision, Russia said that none of the Russian delegates would attend it. "My colleagues agree that it is unacceptable to lower the level of Russian representation at the session because it is important and is dedicated to the 40th anniversary of the Helsinki Accords, which is the fundamental document", Naryshkin noted.

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