Georgian lawmakers have stated that the decision of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) to not restore Russia’s voting right in the body is a “big victory” for PACE, Georgia and Ukraine.
Commenting on the vote, Vice Parliament Speaker of Georgia Tamar Chugoshvili said “PACE did not allow Russia to have its voting right restored [given that it] continues its aggressive policy in Georgia and Ukraine and refuses to meet its international obligations regarding the withdrawal of its troops from the territories of sovereign countries,”
The decision is a big victory for PACE, as the decision was made despite strong pressure [by Russia and its supporters]. Despite its efforts Russia did not manage to reach its goal,” Chugoshvili added.
The Head of Parliament’s Euro-Integration Committee, Tamar Khulordava, said that “the outcome we have achieved is the greatest victory for Georgia, Ukraine and all the delegations opposing the bill.”
The bill was referred back to the PACE Rules Committee and PACE is expected to return back to discussions in January 2019.
99 lawmakers rejected the bill, while 79 voted in favour of it. 16 abstained from voting.
In April 2014, the Russian delegation to PACE was stripped of its key rights, including the right to vote and take part in the assembly’s governing bodies following the confrontation in Ukraine and Crimea.