St Petersburg summit will spell G8's death: Report | india | Hindustan Times
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St Petersburg summit will spell G8's death: Report

An article by Putin's ex-advisor said attendance of G8 leaders in Russia will prop up a Govt that has abandoned democratic principles.

india Updated: Apr 18, 2006 13:37 IST

The attendance of G8 leaders at a July summit in Russia will prop up a government that has abandoned democratic principles, a former advisor to President Vladimir Putin said in an article published on Tuesday.

This would thus spell the G8's death as a credible organisation.

By attending the July 15-17 summit, the other G8 leaders "will demonstrate their indifference to the fate of freedom and democracy in Russia," said the article in the English-language Moscow Times by Andrei Illarionov.

Illarionov resigned as an economic advisor to Putin last November.

"The G8 summit can only be interpreted as the support of the world's most powerful organisation for Russia's current leadership -- as a stamp of approval of its violations of individual rights, the rule of law and freedom of speech, its discrimination against non-governmental organisations, nationalisation of private property, use of energy resources as a weapon and aggression towards democratically oriented neighbours," the article said.

"The G8 summit will serve as an inspiring example for today's dictators and tomorrow's tyrants... Regardless of how the Saint Petersburg summit proceeds, one thing is clear. The group of Eight as a club of advanced democratic states will cease to exist."

The article echoes ongoing criticism in the West of Russia's fitness to hold the rotating chairmanship of the G8 club of wealthy nations, which Moscow joined in 1997.