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 Full text 
Wednesday, 11 November 2009 - Brussels OJ edition

EU-Russia Summit on 18 November 2009 in Stockholm (debate)

  Lena Kolarska-Bobińska (PPE), in writing. – Madam President, in Russia today, we are seeing the harassment of civil society by the authorities. Organisations whose sole role is to help protect basic civic freedoms and human rights are being driven out by eviction notices, refusal of administrative permits and, in some places in Russia, the murder of their members.

We have just this week read reports that the For Human Rights centre, and the Moscow Helsinki Group, the oldest human rights organisation in Russia, are to be expelled from their premises.

As we, the European Parliament, are about to present this year’s Sakharov Prize to the ‘Memorial’ Foundation, including to one of the founders of the Moscow Helsinki Group, Mrs Lyudmila Mikhailovna Alexeyeva, we must underline that this Parliament, this Union, is more than just about business and making sure that gas arrives as cheaply as possible. We are a union of values, including those of civil liberties, democracy, human rights and human dignity. Next week, our European leaders during the summit need to speak about more than pipelines and free trade. It is not yet time to let the candle of Russian civil society burn out. Thank you

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