The European Union and Russia could start reciprocally lifting restrictive measures by excluding parliament members from sanctions, Russian Federation Council’s temporary Commission on Information Policy and Communications Alexey Pushkov told reporters on Wednesday.
“My position is that it is important to exclude parliament members from sanctions. In my opinion, the EU should establish a dividing line – everything that hampers dialgoue and contacts between parliamentarians should be excluded from the sanctions regime. It is up to them, but they are violating their own principles here because parliament members are elected precisely to express their points of view and the opinions of their electorate. They should not by punished for it,” Pushkov said.
“Conditions have not been created yet for mutual refusal of sanctions against parliament members, but we should promote this effort. I think that if the process of lifting sanctions starts at all, it will start with this,” he noted. Not only EU blacklisted some Russian parliament members, but Russia put several European Parliament members on a similar list, Pushkov added.
The official said that he plans to meet with members of different factions in the European Parliament. “The people I met understand that EU-Russian relations have hit a dead end. They generally think that it is important to get out of this sutation, and that sanctions do not bring any results in this regard,” he concluded.