The United Kingdom’s House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee has criticised the lack of debate in Parliament on the EU’s sanctions on Russia.

In a summary of its meeting published on 19 December 2014, the Committee stated: “This week we consider two new sets of EU restrictive measures in relation to Ukraine and Russia. Although we clear them from scrutiny, we tag the relevant chapters of our Report to the debate that we have previously recommended on the EU-Ukraine Association Agreement. Last month the Minister asked us to rescind that recommendation as a Backbench Business debate had been scheduled on the floor of the House. We declined to do so. The Minister now tells us that a debate in European Committee is the most appropriate option, and that he has asked his officials to arrange this. We do not agree: we recommend a debate on the floor of the House after serious consideration and with good reason, and it is not for the Minister to contradict the Committee’s view and unilaterally determine the appropriate forum for the debate.”

The House of Lords EU Sub-Committee on External Affairs, which is currently conducting an inquiry into the relationship between the EU and Russia (including hearing evidence from the Europe Minister and from the Russian Minister for Foreign Affairs), including as regards sanctions policy, has made similar comments in the past about the need to debate restrictive measures on the floor of the House.

This entry was posted in Russia, United Kingdom by Maya Lester QC. Bookmark the permalink.

About Maya Lester QC

Maya Lester QC has a wide ranging practice in public law, European law, competition law, international law, human rights & civil liberties. She has a particular expertise in sanctions. As the most recent (2016) Chambers & Partners directory put it, she "owns the world of sanctions". She spent 2011-12 in New York at Columbia Law School lecturing and writing on sanctions. She represents and advises hundreds of companies and individuals before the European and English courts and has acted in most of the leading cases, including Kadi, Tay Za, Central Bank of Iran, NITC and IRISL.

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