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March 29, 2007 -- Monitors from the Council of Europe's Parliamentary Assembly have reiterated calls for Russia to abolish the death penalty.
Speaking at a press conference in Moscow, Luc Van den Brande and Theodoros Pangalos said the Council of Europe insisted Russia remove the death penalty from its books, a commitment it undertook when it joined the body in 1996.
After joining the council, Russia imposed a moratorium on executions. But it remains the only country among the council's 46 members not to have ratified a protocol to the European Convention on Human Rights on the abolition of the death penalty.
The PACE monitors today concluded a three-day visit to Russia to assess its progress in honoring its commitments to the council, Europe's top human rights watchdog
The monitors said they had noted some positive developments. They also voiced concerns over some aspects of Russian electoral law ahead of forthcoming parliamentary and presidential elections.
(RIA Novosti, Interfax)
Demonstrators in Moscow carry a coffin with a television in it to protest government control over broadcasting (TASS file photo)
DO RUSSIANS LIKE THEIR GOVERNMENT? During a briefing at RFE/RL's Washington office on November 15, Richard Rose, director of the Center for the Study of Public Policy at the University of Aberdeen, discussed the results of 14 surveys he has conducted since 1992 on Russian public opinion about democracy and the country's development. He discussed the implications of these opinions for relations with the West and for Russia's 2008 presidential election.
Listen to the complete discussion (about 42 minutes):
U.S. Election Expected To Chill Relations With Moscow
Are Mayors Next 'Power Vertical' Victim?
Monarchist Nostalgia Remains Powerful
Russian Election Commission Rejects Third-Term Appeal
Romanov Burial May Be Part Of Kremlin Image Campaign
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