MEPs want to revise agreement on partnership and cooperation with Russian Federation

MEPs want to revise agreement on partnership and cooperation with Russian Federation

With the rise of new areas of tension between the EU and Russia, MEPs voice their support for sanctions, the cancellation of Nord Stream 2 and a better EU response to combat cyber threats.

In a resolution adopted on Monday, Foreign Affairs Committee MEPs assess the state of play in the EU-Russia political relations, according to the website of the European Parliament.

They state that the EU should cooperate with Russia only in areas of common interests, which makes the current Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) necessary to reconsider.

MEPs note that new areas of tension between the EU and Russia have arisen since 2015, including the Russian intervention in Syria and interference in countries such as Libya and Central African Republic, Russia‘s support for anti-EU parties and far-right movements, the Russian meddling in other countries‘ political elections and extensive human rights violations in the own country. They condemn Russia‘s actions in the Sea of Azov and its repeated violations of the territorial waters and air space of the countries in the Baltic Sea region.

The report underlines that the full implementation of the so-called Minsk Agreements and broader respect for international law remain key preconditions for closer EU cooperation with Russia. In the meantime, the current sanctions must remain in place and the EU has to stand ready to take further action, especially by means of targeted sanctions against individuals, the text says. MEPs call, in this context, on EU countries concerned to end all 'golden visa/passport' programmes and urge the European Commission and EEAS to prepare the proposal for a European version of the US law known as the Magnitsky Act.

Although Foreign Affairs MEPs no longer want to consider Russia a strategic partner, they underline that the EU is currently Russia‘s largest trade partner and will keep this position in the foreseeable future. Nevertheless, MEPs reiterate their call for the cancellation of the Nord Stream 2 project, since it reinforces EU dependancy on Russian gas supplies and threatens the EU internal market.

MEPs finally condemn Russia‘s disinformation campaigns and cyber attacks, aimed at increasing tensions within the EU and its member states. 

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