Playing a dangerous game in the North Caucasus
By Messenger Staff
Wednesday, May 2There has been some discussion recently on government policy towards the North Caucasus. A document is being prepared in the Parliamentary Committee for Diaspora and Caucasus Issues, and will supposedly be discussed with the National Security Committee today. This topic has always been a sensitive one, but especially so after the August 2008 war.
Of course, the Russian Federation is irritated by Georgia's plans to establish links with the North Caucasus, which is, according to Moscow, an essential part of that country. The Kremlin has accused Georgia of supporting illegal paramilitary groups in that region, saying that Georgia’s position hinders the Russians from establishing law and order. In addition, two years ago Georgia established a special visa-free regime with residents of the North Caucasus, and has regularly appealed to governments there for cooperation and understanding. The government also established a Russian-language television station in the region and recognized the genocide of the Cherkez people in the 19th century, carried out by the Russian empire.
So, it is difficult to understand what will happen as a result of Georgian strategy, or even what the goal is. The government's efforts may be ignored, or only find an audience among separatist groups. Georgia's efforts to support further disintegration of the Federation will likely only irritate Russia further, and potentially aggravate Russian aggression against Georgia again.