European MP from Ireland Mick Vales, speaking at a debate in the EP’s Foreign Affairs Committee on Russia’s situation ahead of the 2021 parliamentary elections with Russian oppositionists’ participation, assured them that there is also enough corruption in Europe.

Alexey Navalny, Vladimir Kara-Murza, Vladimir Milov, and Ilya Yashin participated in exchanging views with European deputies.

“You mention state corruption. I want to assure you that we have enough of this in European countries as well,” the MEP said.

At the same time, he asked how the EU would react if opposition figures from France, Germany, or Ireland were invited to the State Duma. “If the Duma organized speeches by opposition politicians from France, Ireland, and Germany, what would be the reaction to such a situation,” he said.

Vales also chided European colleagues for paying close attention to democracy in Eastern European countries neighboring the EU while ignoring the situation in other countries, for example, in the United States, the United Arab Emirates or Saudi Arabia. “We see what is happening in other countries, but we do not discuss for some reason the lack of democracy in the UAE or Saudi Arabia,” the parliamentarian was surprised.

At the same time, he stressed that he does not consider anti-Russian sanctions “the right answer.” “Sanctions are not the best way out; they struck people. I don’t think they are the right answer,” Vales concluded.

However, neither vales ‘ European colleagues nor representatives of the Russian opposition commented on the Irish MP’s speech during the debate and did not agree with his opinion. On the contrary, the discussion mainly concerned the organization of support for the Russian opposition from the EU in modern conditions, including the idea of imposing sanctions against businesspeople close to the Russian government, according to the Russian opposition.