Source Pravda.Ru

President Putin meets with PACE Chairman Peter Schieder

On Wednesday Russian President Putin has met with Chairman of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) Peter Schieder in the "Volynskoye" governmental complex.

Deputy Head of the Presidential Administration Sergei Prikhodko said that the two leaders discussed further widening of Russia's cooperation with the Council of Europe and the Parliamentary Assembly.

According to the Kremlin spokesman, taking into account the fact that Putin's meeting with Schieder was held on the eve of the Belarussian Head of State's visit to Russia, the Belarussian issues were on the agenda.

According to Prikhodko, Schieder stressed that "as to contacts with Belarus, the Parliamentary Assembly had no problems," and the Parliamentary Assembly took no measures to isolate the Belarussian parliamentarians.

According to Prikhodko, the Chairman of the Parliamentary Assembly did not address the issue of Chechnya directly. But at the same time, the Kremlin spokesman noted, Vladimir Putin personally informed Peter Schieder of the plans to improve life in Chechnya and the forthcoming referendum there including the adoption of a new Constitution.

Within the framework of discussing the Chechen agenda the Russian Head of State said that "double standards" were inadmissible, referring to the visits by "various emissaries" to Strasbourg.

Another key topic on the agenda was the discussion of the Kaliningrad issue (Russian enclave in the Baltics). According to Prikhodko, Schieder said he fully shared the Russian President's position on the issue. Besides, he welcomed the Kaliningrad decision adopted at the recent EU summit. The Parliamentary Assembly intends to cooperate with Russia on the issue, the PACE Chairman said.

According to Prikhodko, the PACE Chairman highly evaluated the cooperation with Russia as well as Russia's efforts to meet the commitments /including handing over penitentiary institutions from the Interior Department to the Ministry of Justice/.

Vladimir Putin informed the PACE Chairman on the course of improving Russia's legislative base. On the whole, according to the Kremlin spokesman, the meeting was of "an open and informative" character.