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Russia Suspends Payments To Council Of Europe


Russia Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov informed the Council of Europe's secretary-general by phone of the decision to suspend payments. (file photo)

Russia says it is suspending its financial contributions to the Council of Europe over a dispute regarding Russian delegates who were stripped of their authority following the annexation of Ukraine's Crimean peninsula by Russia.

Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov informed the Council of Europe's Secretary-General Thorbjorn Jagland of the decision in a phone conversation, the Foreign Ministry said on June 30.

It quoted Lavrov as telling Jagland that the payments would not resume until the "unconditional total restoration" of the rights of Russia's delegation to the organization.

In April 2014, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) deprived the delegation of voting rights in the wake of Moscow's illegal annexation of the Ukrainian region.

Russia was reportedly to contribute about 33 million euros ($38 million) for the year to the 47-member body that focuses on democracy and human rights across Europe.

Russian Duma speaker Vyacheslav Volodin said this month that Moscow still had about 11 million euros ($13 million) to pay.

Based on reporting by AFP and Reuters
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