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Top European human rights observer pays last visit to Russia

The outgoing head of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe is in Moscow to discuss the forthcoming presidential election with Russian politicians. It's Rene van der Linden’s last visit to Russia in this capacity.

During a three day visit, he's met representatives from the State Duma parties, as well as the opposition and other high-ranking officials.

Among them were foreign minister Sergey Lavrov, Duma Speaker Boris Gryzlov and presidential race favourite Dmitry Medvedev.

At Friday's meeting with Medvedev, Van Der Linden congratulated him on his nomination as presidential candidate. The two discussed co-operation between Russia and Europe.

“Of course, we discussed the upcoming presidential election. And I am happy that we will get an invitation to observe this election. We will do so and  re-elect our mission. And I believe that during the presidential election it is necessary to take into account the recommendations of the report of Mr Van den Brande on the Duma Election of December 2. Some elements of the report were very critical. We’ve already  discussed it in the bureau of Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and we are going to discuss it with the delegation of the Russian State Duma at the Council of Europe assembly in January. It’s very important to have a dialoguo on these elements,” Rene van der Linden said.  

To watch the full interview, please, follow link.