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European MP Resigns over Talks with Assad | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Pedro Agramunt. Photo courtesy of Council of Europe

Strasbourg (France), London- Spanish politician Pedro Agramunt announced on Friday his resignation as president of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE), just three days before the assembly was due to vote on his dismissal.

Agramunt, the 66-year-old president of PACE since January 2016, wrote on Twitter: “Today, for personal reasons, I have decided to no longer chair the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe.”

All of the assembly’s blocs have been demanding his dismissal since he went on a trip to Syria to meet with the head of the regime, Bashar al-Assad, in March.

Agramunt was stripped of his leadership powers at a session in April after the motion received 158 votes of the 324-member Assembly, which decided to vote in favor of his dismissal in October if by then he didn’t resign.

PACE is made up of 324 parliamentarians from the national parliaments of the Council of Europe’s 47 member states, and generally meets four times a year in Strasbourg to discuss upholding human rights, democracy and the rule of law.