‘Russia prepared to open dialogue with Council of Europe’

Moscow is prepared to hold an honest and open dialogue with the Council of Europe (CoE) despite attempts to use the organisation as a tool to ramp up confrontation, Russian Federation Council Speaker Valentina Matviyenko said Monday.

“Regrettably, we are still confronted with attempts to use the CoE as an instrument to counter Russia,” the speaker of the upper house of the Federal Assembly said during her meeting with President of the Parliamentary Assembly of the CoE Rik Daems in Moscow, according to the TASS news agency.

Matviyenko stressed how the CoE often pursues a policy of double standards with the use of unjustly and baseless attacks on Russia, Xinhua news agency reported.

“However, we will continue to defend our national interests and remain fully committed to a clear, open, mutually respectful dialogue to achieve the purposes for which the Council of Europe was once established,” she added.

The CoE is the continent’s leading human rights organization with 47 member states, 27 of which are members of the European Union.