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Compiled by Keti Baramidze
Monday, April 12
Soso Tsintsadze – Paris, Berlin and Rome will not recognise the occupation

"Recognition of the territories as occupied by the Parliaments of European states will certainly be important. We can predict who will say this and who will not in advance. The Council of Europe had passed a resolution on this matter already, but if we mean the USA, Great Britain, Turkey and the other big states acting individually, that is another question," political expert Soso Tsintsadze states in an interview with Akhali Taoba.

"I think the Baltic States and Poland will be the first of the post-Soviet nations to declare the territories occupied. Certainly, this will be an important event. The Council of Europe passed its resolution before specifically stating the territories were occupied. But I think France, Germany and Italy will resist calling them occupied," Soso Tsintsadze says.

"Declaring the territories occupied will affect Russia as it will have slight problems with European states, but the hope that Russia will withdraw its troops if the territories are declared occupied is an illusion. The Russians have spent millions building military bases there and are intending to continue building them in future. Super-mysterious work is underway in Ochamchire to deepen the bottom of the sea to allow larger ships to harbour in the port. Russia will not easily give up those things. But being declared an occupier will be a serious problem for Russia in the international arena," he continues.

"Sometimes we say that the West is ready to start a war with Russia for the sake of Georgia or that the West ignores Georgia and leaves it to face Russia alone. Neither position is correct. There is great diplomacy and great politics. The West has enough problems of its own to deal with and will therefore avoid sharp confrontation with Russia. There is the nuclear issue in Iran, Afghanistan, Iraq etc. Obama inherited a list of problems from Bush. But when these are more or less settled, we shall face a radically different reality," Soso Tsintsadze adds.

"Today the West does not think that Russia is a normal state. New problems have now been added to the traditional ones, I mean the gas supplies by which Russia influences Europe. Let’s take the question of Afghanistan, for example," Tsintsadze states.

Asked if we should keep on waiting for these problems to be resolved, Tsintsadze said: "We cannot just wait for the development of events but should endeavour to affect them ourselves with our own resources. Certainly, these are restricted but we can achieve some results by means of skilful diplomacy. Do you suppose Russia's influence over the West was achieved by Russian diplomacy? Not at all. It was created by Bush stupidly rushing into Iraq and then Afghanistan. Our diplomacy needs more care, work, originality and guile for us to protect our national interests."

What made Salome Zourabichvili join the Alliance?

In an interview with Alia Salome Zourabichvili says: “I announced long ago that I definitely support Irakli Alasania as Mayoral candidate. I also stated on April 9 that I was joining the Alliance. Today an alternative really exists which we should undoubtedly use to defeat Saakashvili and save our country. My final goal isn’t the elections, they are only one of the stages leading to our victory!

"The main goal always has been to get rid of Saakashvili and to make this a reality a strong and powerful alternative is necessary. Today I’ve decided to join this already existing alternative, and now we are going to create the means to destroy Saakashvili. Entering the Alliance was my party's decision as well as mine. We made it on April 8 and announced it on April 9. The Alliance had also previously suggested this to us. Our party will have its place in the Alliance, we don’t argue about it. Everyone here will have equal rights. I am not a place seeker at all, and my only goal is to rescue my country," states Salome Zourabichvili.

Asked if she agreed or disagreed with Levan Gachechiladze holding further consultations with Alasania, Zourabichvili said, “I, like others, will have the right to oppose Gachechiladze’s actions as the Alliance itself is an open and not a closed body. So I think that everybody who wants to change Saakashvili’s regime should join us. We don't need further judgements or consultations to do this," concludes Zourabichvili.