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Prospects for a United Caucasus

By Messenger Staff
Friday, December 2
Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili is actively promoting the idea of a United Caucasus. A year ago he mentioned this idea to Azerbaijani president Ilham Aliev, a couple of days ago he said the same thing to the Armenian president Serzh Sargsyan. Both leaders of the neighbouring countries kept silent and left the idea without comment. Some analysts and the representatives of the Georgian opposition express their doubt about the possibility of a United Caucasus.

During his meeting with his Armenian counterpart, Saakashvili spoke in detail about the idea of a United Caucasus, which would mean a united economic space and in the long run the creation of a political commonwealth. There is no alternative for our little countries, stated Saakashvili, adding that all the conflicts in the Caucasus are initiated by imperialist forces from outside, meaning Russia of course. Analyst and expert in Caucasus issues Mamuka Areshidze mentioned that making such statements is senseless and confusing because the issue is not prepared and is unrealistic. How can one offer unification between countries which are embroiled in military confrontation? Areshidze thinks that Saakashvili’s idea is based on a certain concept probably coming from the west and maybe based on economic unity which might look attractive, however is not realistic. Maybe the Georgian president as usual is under the influence of some attractive idea and wants to promote it in the usual hasty way.

The leader of the Green Party Giorgi Gachechiladze thinks that Saakashvili is making some steps and it is not only talk. According to him moving the government to Kutaisi is a move towards the implementation of the United Caucasus. Thus Saakashvili wants to move the capital of Georgia to make the capital of a Caucasus confederation Tbilisi, thinks Gachechiladze. Most of Georgian society assesses the idea of a Caucasus confederation skeptically despite the fact that Saakashvili took the decision of moving parliament to Kutaisi and even stated the date for that, May 26, 2012 though most of the opposition thinks the move is unacceptable.

As for the idea of a United Caucasus most commentators think that the idea is not formed and shaped even for Saakashvili himself. There is no viable plan or calculation, parameters or other technical issues thought out and these are absolutely necessary when any kind of serious and solid plans are put together. Even conceptually there are no ideas about the role and position of Russia with its North Caucasus republics and their interests and so on. Many question marks exist and before any move is made everything should be reconsidered.