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The Federation Council

 

The Federal Assembly is made up of two chambers: the Federation Council and the State Duma. While working in close cooperation with one another, the chambers are also independent and have different terms of reference. They meet separately and are located in different buildings in Moscow. 

 
The Federation Council building in downtown Moscow

The Federation Councils main task is to reflect the positions and represent the interests of the Russian regions. It consists of 178 members and is formed according to the following principle: two deputies from each constituent unit of the Russian Federation who are either elected or appointed representatives of the legislative and executive branches in their region.

The Federation Council has the exclusive jurisdiction over such questions as the redemarcation of borders between constituent members of the Federation, the ratification of presidential decrees on the introduction of martial law or states of emergency, the use of Russian armed forces outside the countrys borders and the calling of presidential elections.

As the upper house of parliament, the Federation Council has an important role to play in the legislative process. The laws passed by the lower house, the State Duma, must get the approval of the upper chamber. If the Federation Council rejects a law, it is subjected to a special conciliatory procedure and reconsideration by the State Duma.

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