The greeting reads, in particular:
“The present meeting can rightly be considered to be a major event among those Russia has organised during its presidency of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe. In fact, a wide range of important and topical issues lie at the centre of your discussion. These issues include the role of political parties in searching for effective answers to the challenges of today’s world, as well as cooperation between parties and other participants in the democratic process.
Today both the European continent and the world at large are faced with serious threats such as extremism, xenophobia and religious intolerance. And it is obvious that not only states but also political parties and other institutes of civil society should take active participation in neutralizing these threats. In connection with this, we note with satisfaction that the Council of Europe and its Parliamentary Assembly are paying increased attention to issues such as intercultural and interreligious dialogue.
I expect that the meeting in Moscow will allow you to exchange opinions on the different ways to develop European democracy and to accomplish tasks that stand before all European political parties, namely increasing daily contact with voters, ensuring the protection of human rights and respect for the rule of law. And your direct dialogue and lively discussions will certainly make an important contribution to European-wide cooperation, including further deepening ties between political parties and parliaments.”
The President wished the participants and guests of the session of the Council of Europe Forum for the Future of Democracy fruitful work and all the best.