Old habits die hard

Occasionally, representatives of Germany’s Left party (Die Linke) will complain about being tagged as the successors to East Germany’s communist party. Well.

Yesterday, the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe voted to strip the Russian delegation to that body of its voting privileges for the rest of 2014, as a reaction to Russia’s annexation of the Crimea. The overall vote was 145 in favor of revoking the Russians parliamentarians’ votes and 21 against, with 22 abstentions.

The German delegation voted 5-1 to revoke, with Yes votes coming from a Green, two Christian Democrats and two Social Democrats. The sole No vote? From a Left parliamentarian. Because Moscow, I suppose.

Some other votes are interesting.

Speaking of old habits dying hard, the Finns neatly arranged their five votes to cancel each other out: 2-2-1. Apparently, Finlandization never really went out of style.

The Azeris, with one eye on Vladimir Putin, autocrat of some of the Russias, and the other on Nagorno-Karabakh, courageously abstained, all six of them. The Armenians, eyes fixed in the same places, drew a different conclusion and all voted against.

Turkey, which had nine members present and voting, tallied up three in favor, four against and two abstaining. Could it be a Cyprus thing? Or could someone actually think that under the Treaty of Küçük Kaynarca, Crimea would fall under Turkish suzerainty? I’d bet on Cyprus; if there’s something puzzling about Turkish foreign policy, Cyprus is usually a reason.

This entry was posted in A Fistful Of Euros, Governments and parties, Political issues, Ukraine by Doug Merrill. Bookmark the permalink.

About Doug Merrill

Freelance journalist based in Tbilisi, following stints in Atlanta, Budapest, Munich, Warsaw and Washington. Worked for a German think tank, discovered it was incompatible with repaying US student loans. Spent two years in financial markets. Bicycled from Vilnius to Tallinn. Climbed highest mountains in two Alpine countries (the easy ones, though). American center-left, with strong yellow dog tendencies. Arrived in the Caucasus two weeks before its latest war.

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