Russia thinks highly of the dialogue unfolding in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), but will suspend membership if the Russian delegation's powers are not fully confirmed, Russian State Duma Speaker Sergei Naryshkin said in Strasbourg.
Naryshkin, who is leader of the Russian delegation to PACE's January session, to begin on Monday, and other delegation members - Alexei Pushkov, Ivan Melnikov, Leonid Slutsky and Vitaly Ignatenko - attended a meeting of the PACE Presidential Committee on Sunday.
"If the vote on the Russian delegation's powers disappoints us, we will, unfortunately, have to suspend our work in PACE for a year. Responsibility for this will rest with those who make such a decision," Naryshkin told reporters after the meeting.
He said he was an optimist, however, and hoped that "the Parliamentary Assembly will make the right decision."
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