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Vice-Premier: Russian propaganda always increases before elections in Georgia

By Tea Mariamidze
Friday, February 12
Kakha Kaladze, the Minister of Energy and Vice Prime Minister, claimed that Russian propaganda always increases before elections in Georgia.

Kaladze made this statement in response to a report by James Clapper, the head of the US National Intelligence Service, who said in his report that due to increasing Russian propaganda, Tbilisi might slow or suspend its efforts towards Euro-Atlantic integration.

According to the Vice-Premier, the decision of the government and the Georgian people is resolutely integration with Europe.

“Russian propaganda always increases before elections and we shall do our best to stop it. We should implement all necessary reforms as soon as possible, in order to become a member of the European family,” said Kaladze.

He believes the report of James Clapper expresses American support towards Georgia.

The United National Movement party, however, said that the assessment “precisely reflects the situation”, which is a result of ex-PM Bidzina Ivanishvili’s efforts to reverse Georgia’s pro-Western course.

“First of all, the Georgian government should consider the policies within the country, because the risks expressed in [Clapper’s] report are realistic,” Gigi Tsereteli, a member of the UNM, said.

The Free Democrats believe that the pace of Euro-integration should not be slowed and this does not imply only the completion of technical issues and minor reforms.

“When we say that the pace of Euro-integration should be accelerated, we mean the development of Georgia as a democratic country and do not mean only the completion of any technical plans or obligations,” noted Maia Panjikidze, a member of the Free Democrats.

According to the first Deputy Foreign Minister, Davit Zalkaliani, the report of the US National Intelligence Service concerns other countries too and does not only cover Georgia. He explains that this document should not be seen as a kind of warning, but as evidence of the USA’s support for Georgia.

“The United States has no doubt that Georgia has chosen the irreversible path of Euro-Atlantic integration,” stressed Zalkaliani.