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Human Rights Ombudsman Calls Russia Democracy With Reservations

File Photo of Vladimir Lukin
file photo
MOSCOW. Oct 25 (Interfax) - Russian Human Rights Commissioner Vladimir Lukin believes Russia could be called a democratic country with some reservations.

"Do we have democracy or not? I would say yes and no, because an ideal democracy does not exist in reality anywhere. In this sense, you never have democracy anywhere," Lukin said at an international conference on Tuesday. "Some countries have less democracy and some more. As for us, we perhaps have less of it. But this means that we should make some efforts ourselves and think what democracy should be in Russia, taking into account its historic, social, and psychological way and its expectations," Lukin said.

Considering Russia's historical way, it is currently passing a "mild" period of its development, Lukin said. "If you compare it with Russia's real historical way, its place, its political system, and a combination of social and political institutions, I would say this is one of the mildest periods in the country's development over the past 300 years, with very broad opportunities for self-expression, especially in personal rather than political terms," he said.

"But if we compare Russia with our ideal, with what a minimally appropriate democracy should be, we don't have it, especially in the political field," he said.

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