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Busy times for Georgia - at home and abroad

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Tuesday, September 7
Georgia’s complaint against Russia will be discussed September 13-17 in The Hague, Deputy Head of the Foreign Ministry, Nino Kalandadze stated on September 6. She also announced the opening of an Ambassadorial event on September 7-10 in Tbilisi, as part of the event Georgia will host high level foreign delegations.

“The Georgian Delegation will leave for The Hague on September 7. Our claim is about the ethnic cleansing in Georgia carried out by Russia from 1990 until now. We hope that the court will understand our arguments,” Kalandadze said.

Also important to Georgia is the 64th session of the United Nations, during which the Georgian-initiated resolution on the refugee status of those people displaced from Abkhazia and so called South Ossetia, will be voted on. “Giving refugee status to those people in UN resolutions is as important as the use of the term de-occupation. We know that the Russians will seriously oppose us, however we have held consultations with all the UN nations and we await their support,” Kalandadze stated.

Apart from the above two issues, Kalandadze announced that Tbilisi will host a prestigious event for ambassadors September 7-10, which will be attended by Georgia’s ambassadors to various countries. OSCE Secretary General Perin de Brishambo, Finnish Foreign Minister Alexandr Stub and the Estonian Foreign Minister Urmas Paet will also attend the event. “The guests will have bilateral official meetings in Tbilisi. They will meet with the Georgian President, Mikheil Saakashvili and deliver their reports at the ambassadorial event,” Kalandadze stated. She also mentioned that a delegation of the US Department of Commerce is expected to visit Georgia September 8-9 when Tbilisi will host a business summit and a trade mission. The delegation will consist of US government officials as well as representatives of the business sector. The visit will examine the business environment in Georgia. The US visitors will meet with the Georgian authorities.

With regard to the Foreign Ministry statements, analyst Nika Chitadze told The Messenger, “The UN General Assembly will make a decision concerning the IDP’s from Abkhazia and so called South Ossetia, however their resolutions have pros and cons. General Assembly resolutions are unlike those of the UN Security Council, in that they are only recommendations in nature rather than obligatory and their practical realisation is frequently questioned. However, on a positive note, Russia does not have the right of veto in the General Assembly, so it will be difficult for the Russians to stop pro-Georgian resolutions. Secondly it will be another victory for Georgian diplomacy from an international viewpoint.” He added, “As for Georgia’s claim to The Hague International Tribunal, Georgia is right from a juridical standpoint and if the Court is completely impartial, and not under any influence, then Georgia will win. However, when the Kosovo case was being discussed the court was influenced by powerful western countries and the decision that was adopted then was not free. So I reiterate, that if the people in the Hague Court are truly impartial people, Georgia will get a positive result, if there is Russian influence the outcome will not be acceptable for us,”