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UN to adopt new resolution on IDPs

By Messenger Staff
Tuesday, September 7
UN General Assembly is planning to adopt a new resolution concerning IDPs from Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region on September 7. The contents of the resolution should be similar to that of last year’s. It will state the necessity for the return of the refugees to their original homes and highlight the rights of the IDPs. The resolution is not obligatory in nature and it certainly will not be fulfilled. However the Georgian authorities think that this resolution is very important, showing overwhelming international support for Georgia.

The two page text of the resolution in reality is simply repeating what was adopted in 2009 by the UN General Assembly. The resolution lists the rights of the refugees and recommends the participating sides to discuss and resolve the issues during the Geneva negotiations. There is particular emphasis on the issue of the refugees’ return. A similar type of resolution was first adopted before the Russian invasion of Georgia in 2008, with support from only 14 countries – 11 were against. In 2009 the resolution was adopted with 48 countries in favour and 19 against. The Georgian authorities hope that in 2010 the resolution will have fewer opponents. The Georgian authorities claim that such a resolution should be adopted by the UN every year so that the international community is always aware of the problems Georgia faces concerning its refugees.

However the question arises why is this resolution repeated if its adoption yields no positive consequences. This is the responsibility of the Russian occupiers and their separatist puppet regimes in Sokhumi and Tskhinvali. Together, in both cases, they planned and masterminded the ethnic cleansing of the population and now they oppose the return of the Georgian population back to their homes.

The Georgian leadership is more optimistic and thinks that sooner or later the UN resolutions will achieve their goal, stating that it will happen – it is just a matter of time. Meanwhile the IDPs from Georgia live everyday in difficult conditions; conditions which are sometimes completely unbearable. As has been reported, there have recently been a number of scandalous evictions of IDPs, kicked out of their temporary homes. Georgian officials are criticised by the opposition, NGOs as well as international organisations and ombudsman.

The reality is unfortunately very sad, it is obvious that IDPs as well as ordinary people and the officials that there is almost no chance of the IDPs being able to go back home in the foreseeable future, as that lies beyond the power of the Georgian authorities. It is also clear that the international community is unable to do anything in this regard, because Russia not only separated these regions from Georgia by occupying them but made them some of the most militarily staffed regions in the world. Russia continues this process and has not the slightest intention to move out. Much of the Georgians’ belongings and real estate has been destroyed, while what remains is going into the hands of separatists for the Russians.

The demographic picture is changing, with a clear russification. It is hard to imagine that the process will be reversed in the near future, if ever. It is significant that the UN General assembly will discuss a similar document submitted by Azerbaijan that demands observing the rights of refugees from Nagorno Karabakh and the adjacent territories occupied by Armenia.

Meanwhile, in Yerevan the opinion is that even if the UN general assembly adopts this document it will only be a recommendation and so will yield no real results in favour of either Georgia or Abkhazia. The skeptic could ask why are such resolutions taken at all. We should however be optimistic and hope that eventually such resolutions will yield some positive outcomes.