Local view for "http://purl.org/linkedpolitics/eu/plenary/2007-05-09-Speech-3-070"

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"Even in the twenty-first century, paper is still the fundamental element in the building of bridges between nations. The lack of this element, and the difficulties in drafting a new EU-Russia partnership and cooperation document, are, alas, a reflection of this gloomy reality. From Moscow we hear statements that such an agreement is basically unnecessary. The contrived crisis in Estonian-Russian relations, and therefore in EU-Russia relations, bears witness to an important lack of understanding that all the European Union Member States are both equal and equally sovereign. Nonetheless, dialogue is now all the more necessary, because the alternative is a return to the still-not-overgrown trenches of the Cold War. Such an option would not be helpful to anyone in today's already unstable world. The difficult talks in Samara should be a step forward toward a clearer and franker statement of positions and the formulation of political rules of play that correspond to the new realities. The document we are considering correctly stresses that a new agreement would be very important for deepening economic cooperation and strengthening security and stability in Europe. Strategic partnership with Russia remains a European Union goal, as emphasised in the draft resolution. However, both parties need to seek this goal by strengthening human rights, democracy and free speech, and renouncing great-power and imperial ambitions."@en1

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