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Who would you prefer to make friends with, the West or Russia?

Monday, November 30
“Talking about Georgian-Russian friendship is out of the question. What these people did to us last year and continue to do! It is just impossible to talk about any kind of ‘friendly’ relations with them. It’s a priority for any country to have a good neighbour but despite our common religion I believe that this friendship will never exist and never has.”
Giga, office manager, 32

“I prefer the West, because I want to study in Europe and it would be more easy to make friends with the West than Russia, so it will be a useful friendship.”
Maia, student, 26

“I prefer Russia, because I know this country and I know what I cab expect from it, but the West I do not know. What I do clearly understand is that friendship with the West brings us war, and this is inevitable, because the West only needs us as a means of provoking Russia. It is very bad that society does not realise that Saakashvili is the West’s pawn.”
Vakhtang, political scientist, 43

"I would prefer to make friends with both the West and Russia but it is very unfortunate that we have such an important choice and very bad that the Government and not the Georgian public will make this choice. I can say that friendship with the West is very useful for young people, students, because there they can make a good career and have a future. But Russia is our near neighbour from olden times. Every Georgian has at least one relation in Russia but because of the West we could lose them, because it has become very difficult for us to go to Russia, unfortunately.”
Lika, housewife, 56

"I think it would be better to make friends with Russia, because we are neighbours and united by many things. But on the other hand there are more nationalists in Russia than in Europe. But anyway I mostly incline towards Russia.”
Diana, economist, 25

“It is unimaginable that we have such a strained relationship with a neighbour. Of course we should improve the situation and have friendly relations with Russia.”
Feride, student, 20

“Frankly speaking I consider that Georgia should be a neutral country. We need help from, and good relations with, both the West and Russia. This is really difficult but not impossible. And we should do this for the peaceful future of our children.”
Marika, shopkeeper, 56

“We need and should have friendly relations with the West. I know this is somehow the guarantee of the success of Georgia and stability in our country, but I cannot imagine living in such a strained situation forever and hope that our authorities will manage to improve relations with Russia.”
Mamuka, engineer, 35