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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Group Faces UN Suspension After Moscow's Complaint

UNITED NATIONS -- A European human rights group was placed on a list for suspension from the United Nations on Friday after Russia protested that it had allowed a Chechen politician to speak on its behalf.

The UN committee on nongovernmental organizations recommended the Brussels-based Transnational Radical Party be suspended from UN consultative status for three years after Moscow complained that it included a Chechen "terrorist" during its testimony before the 53-nation UN Human Rights Commission in Geneva in April.

More than 2,000 independent, private and advocacy groups have an association with the UN Economic and Social Council that allows them to give expert advice and lobby delegates. The council will make the final decision on suspending the TRP.

The TRP, a cross-party pacifist organization with offices in four European cities, said Akhyad Idigov, the former member of the separatist Chechen parliament who spoke at the rights commission, was a strong peace advocate.

They said he had addressed the meeting about the need to end human rights violations on both sides of the Chechnya conflict, which pits Moscow against separatist guerrillas.

The TRP's members include about 20 European Parliament deputies.

Moscow denounced a UN Security Council debate on the Balkans as nonsense on Saturday, saying any such discussion was pointless if Yugoslavia were excluded.

Russia's UN ambassador, Sergei Lavrov, walked out of Friday's debate on the issue in reaction to a vote by council members to bar Belgrade's envoy from the meeting. China's envoy also walked out of the debate.

"Discussing Balkan problems without Yugoslavia is complete nonsense," the ministry said in a statement echoing Lavrov's comments Friday.

"It is a dangerous precedent when a state unacceptable to someone for political reasons is excluded from UN activities."