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Monday, 24 February 2014 - Strasbourg

3. Statements by the President
Verbatim reports

The President made a statement in which he reviewed the current situation in Ukraine and, in particular, expressed Parliament's solidarity with the Ukrainian people and condemned the recent violence in that country.

The President also welcomed the release of Yulia Tymoshenko, partly thanks to the good offices of Pat Cox, former President of Parliament and Aleksander Kwaśniewski, former President of Poland.

He stressed that priorities now needed to be given to the stability and unity of Ukraine and to national reconciliation, and reminded Members that Parliament would debate the situation in Ukraine on Wednesday following the return of its ad hoc delegation from Kiev.

Parliament observed a minute's silence in memory of those who had lost their lives in the struggle for democracy and freedom.

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The President then made a statement expressing his condolences to the families of the victims of the tragic accident off the coast of Kerala in India on 15 February 2012. He also referred to the fate of the two Italian marines, Massimiliano Latorre and Salvatore Girone, who were still being held by the Indian authorities after more than two years.

The President called on the Indian authorities to apply international law, reiterated the commitment of Italy and the European Union to combating piracy throughout the world, and stressed that relations between the European Union and India needed to be based on mutual trust, respect for the rule of law, diplomacy and dialogue. He expressed his solidarity with the two Italian citizens who were being held.

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