At the opening of the State Duma spring session the speaker Vyacheslav Volodin addressed to the deputies with the speech. He touched on a number of important issues – the 100th anniversary of the events of 1917, enhancing the quality of deputies’ work as well as the Duma as a whole and the development of dialogue between the Parliament and the civil society.
Within the framework of foreign policy agenda, Vyacheslav Volodin commented on the prospects of the Russian delegation return to the PACE: “This issue is a matter of necessary changes in the PACE regulations. Only when the changes are made and the rights of national delegations are protected this would make sense”.
Indeed the current PACE regulations often rather complicate international parliamentary dialogue. Moreover to withdraw the national delegation of voting rights is not the best way to develop the dialogue and to address to the challenges “Wider Europe” faces today.
In this regard, if the PACE is interested in promoting its role of a platform for international cooperation, it is necessary to pay attention to the regulations that should be changed in democratic way. Deputies do de facto represent the citizens of member states; therefore any delegation must have the basic right to express its opinion and to represent the interests of its constituents.
Both sides would benefit from Russian delegation return to the PACE; however life is much more complicated. Although there were not any breakthroughs during the meeting between Vyacheslav Volodin and Pedro Agramunt, hope the best is yet to come.