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French National Assembly backs resolution on lifting anti-Russian sanctions

Members of the French parliament voted on Thursday to lift the anti-Russian sanctions.

The resolution was adopted at the session of the lower house of parliament, the National Assembly. A total of 55 MPs voted in its favor and another 44 lawmakers voted against the document.

The vote was attended by only a part of the 577 MPs. The resolution is advisory and non-binding for the French leadership.

"Despite the ruling majority's opposition, the draft was backed by many colleagues at the parliament and should be perceived by the government very seriously," said Nicolas Dhuicq, a member of the Republicans party and the parliamentary commission on national defense and armed forces.

"We cannot anymore tolerate multi-billion losses of the French enterprises due to sanctions," he said, stressing that the sanctions have become a heavy burden for the French agriculture."

The resolution of the National Assembly was submitted for the vote by a large group of parliamentarians from the center-right Republicans party led by Thierry Mariani, who co-chairs the French-Russian Dialogue Association.

The document "calls on the French government not to extend the restrictive measures and economic sanctions imposed on Russia by the European Union." After the vote, Mariani said the approval of the document came as a "pleasant surprise." "Formally, the government can refuse to implement this resolution, but ignoring it would mean to negate democracy," he said.

[Source: Itar Tass, Paris, 28Apr16]

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