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Russian Federation Council speaker says Moscow made one third of its annual payment to CE

One third has been paid, around €10 million, Valentina Matviyenko says

MOSCOW, February 26. /TASS/. Russia made one third of its annual payment to the Council of Europe (CE), Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko told reporters on Friday.

"One third has been paid, around €10 million. Two thirds have been put aside for now," Matviyenko said answering a TASS question.

In 2014, the parliamentary arm of the 47-nation Council of Europe, promoting democracy and human rights across the continent, stripped Russia of voting rights following events in Ukraine. It suspended both Russia's right to sit on its governing bodies and Russian participation in election observer missions.

Russian parliamentary delegates left the April session before its official completion as a gesture of protest and refused to take part in future PACE activities, staying away from the assembly's summer and autumn sessions. At the January session in 2015, PACE extended its sanctions against Russia’s delegation until April. In response, Moscow severed contact with the group for another year. The Russian delegation repeatedly stated that it will return to PACE only if all sanctions from Russia are removed. The Russian delegation did not take part in PACE’s winter session in Strasbourg.