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Both Chambers of Russian Parliament Discuss Terrorism During Joint Meeting

Federation Council head Valentina Matviyenko

Both upper and lower houses of the Russian Parliament — the Federation Council and the State Duma — met for a joint session оn Friday for the first time since Russia's annexation of Crimea from Ukraine in March 2014.

The topic of terrorism and a possible terror threat to the country dominated the proceedings.

During the session, Federation Council Chairwoman Valentina Matviyenko proposed creating an international tribunal for terrorists and giving the special law enforcement services more power. Her deputy Ilyas Umakhanov suggested that special penal colonies for terrorists should be created.

Former chairman of the Federation Council and current leader of the A Just Russia party Sergei Mironov went further and said the death penalty should be reinstated for terrorists.

At the end of the session a joint statement was issued: “Those present at this joint session consider it necessary to support the decisive measures undertaken by the president, including military intervention in Syria, as well as proposals to apply the [UN charter article 51] about the right of countries to self-defense,” senators and deputies said in the statement, the Vedomosti newspaper reported.

The statement included the intention to toughen criminal penalties for terrorism, as well as aiding and abetting terrorists, and to tighten security measures. Migration legislation should also be improved in order to make sure terrorists wouldn't be allowed into the country, the statement said. The proposals would be the basis for new bills, said senator Andrei Klishas, Vedomosti reported.

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