European far-right groups back Putin at Russia forum

Cossacks take part in the International Russian Conservative Forum in Saint-Petersburg on March 22, 2015Representatives of about a dozen far-right groups from across Europe gathered in Russia Sunday for a pro-Kremlin conference as concern grows over Moscow’s alleged attempts to court extremists on the continent. About 150 members of Russian nationalist and right-wing European parties — including Greece’s Golden Dawn and Germany’s National Democratic Party — met in Russia’s second city Saint Petersburg to berate the West for its stance on the Ukraine conflict and to promote “traditional values”. Far-rights groups across Europe have become vocal supporters of Russian President Vladimir Putin over his handling of the Ukraine crisis, prompting allegations they have reached a Faustian pact to help burnish the Kremlin’s battered image.

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