Library of Congress

Law Library of Congress

The Library of Congress > Law Library > News & Events > Global Legal Monitor

European Union: Parliament Adopts Tough Stand on Russia

(June 25, 2015) On June 11, 2015, the European Parliament (EP) adopted a new resolution by a vote of 494 to 135, with 69 abstentions. The resolution’s main focus is relations between the European Union and Russia in the wake of the Ukraine crisis. (Press Release, European Parliament, Plenary Session, Russia Is No Longer a Strategic Partner of the EU, Say MEPs (June 11, 2015).)

The Parliament expressed concern about the state of human rights and the rule of law in Russia and requested that the European Commission earmark funds for special projects designed to fight Russian propaganda inside and outside the European Union. (Id.)

In addition, the Parliament recommended that EU Member States not engage in bilateral agreements with Russia. Currently, a number of EU countries, including Greece, Hungary, and Austria, intend to assist in the building of a pipeline that will bring Russian gas from Turkey via Greece, Macedonia, Serbia, and Hungary, to Vienna, Austria. (Id.)

The Parliament also voiced concern over Russia’s financial and other types of support for extremist and radical movements in the EU. It called for the creation of a mechanism supported by the Member States and the Commission with the objective of monitoring technical, political, and financial support of political parties and organizations in the EU provided by Russia. The mechanism will also be used to measure the potential impact of Russian influence on the general public and political parties. (Id.)

The Parliament also urged EU Members to maintain a uniform approach against Russia’s annexation of Crimea and Russia’s involvement in the war in Ukraine as an “absolute priority.” (Id.) The EP rapporteur, Gabrielius Landsbergis, stated that because of Russia’s “aggression against Ukraine and annexation of Crimea, the Russian leadership has put our relations at a crossroads. It is up to the Kremlin to decide now which way it will go – cooperation or deepening alienation.” (Id.)