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A meeting of YABLOKO leaders with Guy Verhofstadt, President of the Liberal Group in the European Parliament

Press Release

March 5, 2012

Grigory Yavlinsky said that the main objective of all the opposition forces in Russia should be radical change in the socio-political system rather than simply a replacement of top officials. He said this during a meeting with representatives of the European Parliament's Liberal Group (ALDE). The sides discussed the political situation in Russia after the presidential elections and prospects for further development.

The meeting was held on March 5 in YABLOKOs office. Guy Verhofstadt, leader of the liberals in the European Parliament and ex Prime Minister of Belgium, Renaldas Vaisbrodas, Political Adviser, ALDE, Sergei Mitrokhin, YABLOKO Chairman, Galina Mikhalyova, Executive Secretary of the Political Council and head of the Gender faction and Olga Radayeva, International Secretary.

Sergei Mitrokhin said that the current situation in Russia was complicated noting the authorities' attempts to provoke a conflict in the society. He also marked that it was especially important to prevent the radicalisation of various segments of the opposition without yielding to possible provocations.

According to Grigory Yavlinsky, violence during the protest actions can through the opposition movement ten years back. He also stressed that YABLOKO had called on leaders of the protest movements to do everything so that to avoid violence and bloodshed during the coming protests.

Speaking about the present political system in Russia, Guy Verhofstadt said that for him the turning point as regards his attitude to Vladimir Putin and his system was the murder of Anna Politkovskaya. " I realized then that Russia pursuing the authoritarian model," he said.
According to Yavlinsky, many elements of the existing system, which he called "crony capitalism, did not function, which made this system unreformable in principle. "It is important that its collapse should not end with bloodshed," Grigory Yavlinsky said. "In this situation, the task of YABLOKO is to push the system to the evolutionary path. That is why we participated in the elections and worked with tens of thousands of observers," he added.

"Europeans should honestly say that our system does not comply with the European system of democratic values. This is a development of Boris Yeltsins system and further development of the fraud that started in 1996, Yavlinsky said. "But Europeans preferred not to talk about it then, laying more emphasis on the person of Boris Yeltsin as the guarantor of the democratic way of Russias development, Guy Verhofstadt noted. "Today many people in the West say that Russians simply do not fit into democracy. I believe that this is not true. Russians understand the importance of democratic procedures, law and democratic values, but these values imply a mature civil society, which in Russia has not developed yet," said the leader of the European liberals.



















See also:

Russia-EU Relations

Presidential Elections 2012

State Duma Elections 2011



Press Release

March 5, 2012

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