On 17 March 2014, the European Union imposed sanctions on a number of members of the Federal Assembly – the Parliament of the Russian Federation, namely against V. Ozerov, V. Djabarov, A. Klishas, N. Ryzhkov, E. Bushmin, A. Tatoonov, O. Panteleev, S. Mironov, S. Zheleznyak, L. Slutskiy. On 21 March 2014, this list was complemented with the names of the Heads of both Chambers of the Russian Parliament – V. Matvienko and S. Naryshkin – and that of Deputy E. Mizulina.
All these persons are not allowed to enter or transit through the territory of the European Union countries.
While the imposition of sanctions is discriminatory and unconstructive in itself, it also raises questions as to whether they comply with fundamental instruments of the Council of Europe, including the European Convention on Human Rights which the European Union aspires to accede to soon.
In particular, this refers to the freedom of expression as set out in Article 10 of the Convention. The only fact that the European Union countries can accuse these persons of is that they have publicly expressed their opinion about the processes taking place in Ukraine and Crimea.
Also the question arises as to the compliance of those European Union actions with Article 6 of the said Convention concerning the right to a fair trial in case of civil rights violations. Apart from the fact that the European Union decision was taken by a body representing the executive and not the judicial power, this decision is encroaching upon the rights of the listed persons and cannot be appealed by them.
Therefore, the Parliamentary Assembly should consider to what extent such European Union actions are in line with the nature of parliamentarism which presupposes having relations through dialogue.