Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-04-23-Speech-1-052"

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"Mr President, I would like to join with Mr Szájer in expressing concern about the harassment and beating of peaceful demonstrators in Moscow and St Petersburg eight or nine days ago. This became a demonstration of force by the Russian authorities against their own citizens, as thousands of security forces outnumbered the Another Russia demonstrators by four to one. Sadly, such behaviour simply confirms the rating of Russia as a non-free country by the international organisation Freedom House. Opposition leaders Kasparov and Illarionov have both indicated that, on its present course, Russia is nearing the status of Belarus or Zimbabwe. Russia is eager to be seen as a powerful state. It is absolutely counterproductive to demonstrate the might of the state at the expense of its citizens in the same way as the tsars or Brezhnev used to do. Mr President, I am most thankful to you for sharing these concerns on behalf of the European Parliament and for having made initiatives to contact Mr Kasparov and others."@en1

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