The Bureau of the parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) expressed on Friday, April 28, a vote of no confidence in the President (speaker) of PACE Pedro Agramunt. This was reported in the official report of the PACE, placed at the disposal .
“The President of the Assembly did not appear today at a meeting of the Bureau and has not filed letters of resignation, — said the Chairman of the Bureau and senior Vice President of the PACE Roger Gale. In accordance with the procedure according to which no one can force the speaker to resign, the Bureau took appropriate action”.
PACE Bureau is the highest consultative body of the Assembly, who is coordinating the work of the committees, the foreign activities of the PACE and advises its President. The Bureau consists of the President, 20 Vice-presidents, heads of committees and political factions.
A vote of no confidence by the Bureau of PACE means that Agramunt deprived of the right to engage in social activities as PACE President: to negotiate, to pay official visits to make a statement. “The standards and principles of PACE are more important than each individual member,” — said Gail.
Agramunt has come under fire at the opening of the PACE spring session on April 24. The reason for this was a trip to Syria with a delegation of European parliamentarians at the invitation of Russian state Duma deputies. During the two-day trip Agramunt met with Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and visited the base of Russian air force in Hamima.
Subsequently, the PACE President said the trip to Syria was a mistake, but insisted that he made it as a member of the Spanish Senate, not as President of PACE. The Ukrainian delegation to the Assembly insisted on the censure.
“The reason for [this position] is not from our point of view, the situation with his visit to Syria together with the deputies of the state Duma of Russia”, — explained in his Facebook a member of the Ukrainian delegation in PACE Alexey Goncharenko. According to him, in connection with the inability to send the speaker a resignation is necessary to “put pressure on him through political groups, performances that at least everyone felt that cooperation with Russia is toxic”.
First Vice-speaker of the Verkhovna Rada Iryna Gerashchenko said that the Ukrainian delegation demanded changes in the rules and start the procedure of impeachment of the President of the PACE. “What a shame, it happens with everyone who is associated with dictators. Agramont is Putin and Assad, not PACE — that is our position,” she added.