Bucharest, November 27, 2015/Independent Balkan News Agency
By Irina Stoica
Scandal erupted in the Romanian Parliament during a session with a controversial special guest. The president of the Russian State Duma, Sergei Naryshkin (photo), was present at the Romanian Senate even though he’s on a list of 24 Russian officials banned from traveling in the EU. Still, in his case, an exception was made because he was invited in Bucharest in the margins of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation and Romania has informed its EU partners about this, according to a press release from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
His presence in the Senate caused intense protest. Members of the Ukrainian delegation who also attended the meeting brought banners saying “Stop Putin!” and protested against Russia’s aggression against Ukraine.
Sergei Naryshkin paid little attention to the critics and took the floor with some very daring statements regarding host-state Romania. He mentioned Romania’s involvement in the American anti-missile shield in Europe and said that this involvement was not the wish of the Romanian people.”It was what Romanian politicians chose for Romania and we only respect that choice, even though I doubt it was the choice of the Romanians. The countries in this region and their citizens were told that threats are coming from the Russian Federation. But it’s not true, Russia is not the source of these threats, they come from other course. The terrorist attacks in Paris prove that we’ve been right all along for the past 20 years. No NATO structure or American anti-missile shield could save Paris”, the Russian official said.
Naryshkin’s presence in an EU country was possible because of the protocol around the Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation signed in Baku in 2003. According to this document, Romania has the obligation to allow access on its territory for any foreign officials who represent their countries at the Parliamentary Assembly of the Black Sea Economic Cooperation sessions taking place in Romania.