Russia’s Foreign Ministry accused the government of Georgia of sabotaging the Geneva International Discussions by creating a “confrontational and hysterical” atmosphere over the situation in Georgia’s two de facto regions, which are recognized as independent republics by Russia.
Russia accuses Georgia of sabotaging Geneva Talks
By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Monday, March 27
Since the 2008 Russia-Georgia August war, the Geneva International Discussions have been the only format of dialogue between Georgia and Russia, where, according to the 12 August 2008 Ceasefire Agreement, issues including the non-use of force, the creation of international security arrangements in the Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) regions, and the safe and dignified return of IDPs and refugees are discussed.
In its recent statement, Russia’s Foreign Ministry stressed that reports from Georgia about the transi of S-300 anti-aircraft missile systems from Russia to Abkhazia are false.
"The reason behind this propaganda could be anything: the legitimate decision of Abkhazia to optimize the number of checkpoints on its border with Georgia, the bilateral agreement allowing citizens of the South Ossetia to serve under individual contracts in the Russian army, false rumours about the alleged deployment of an additional C-300 division in Abkhazia, and finally, the imaginary transit of a Russian military column through Georgia to Armenia,” Russia says.
They continued on to claim that the “entire political show” has been staged for the forthcoming round of discussions in Geneva.
"Apparently, Tbilisi is going to continue sabotaging the dialogue in Geneva. Therefore, they’ve started creating a confrontational and hysterical atmosphere in advance.
"In this regard, we would like to emphasize that the Russian delegation is predetermined for a calm and productive discussion in Switzerland about the vital issues of security and stability in the Transcaucasus. Thus, we urge our Georgian partners for a constructive dialogue,“ the Russian Foreign Ministry's statement reads.
In his own statement, Georgia’s Foreign Minister Mikheil Janelidze highlighted that the aggressive steps taken by Russia in Georgia’s occupied regions “must be condemned” by the international community.
Janelidze spoke about the deployment of additional anti-aircraft missiles in the occupied Abkhazia region and on the so-called agreement regarding the incorporation of the Tskhinvali region's military units into the Russian Army.
The minister stated Georgia is oriented towards a peaceful resolution of the conflict, and it is essentially important to ensure that the Russian Federation complies with the norms and principles of international law and de-occupies the territories of Georgia - a goal which Georgia will only achieve through the support of its international partners.
Meanwhile, the UN Human Rights Council adopted the Resolution on Cooperation with Georgia at its 34th session held on 24 March 2017. The Resolution initiated by Georgia was co-sponsored by 43 states.
This is the first resolution adopted with respect to Georgia by the UN Human Rights Council, the UN body primarily responsible for protecting human rights.
In the Resolution, the UN Human Rights Council reaffirms its commitment to the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia within its internationally recognized borders.
The Resolution expresses concern over the human rights and humanitarian situation in the occupied regions of Georgia with special emphasis on reported kidnappings, arbitrary detention, interference with property rights, restrictions on access to education in one’s native language, free movement and residence, as well as continued discrimination on the grounds of ethnic origin in both regions.
The Council expressed concern that internally displaced persons and refugees continue to be deprived of the right to return to their homes in a safe and dignified manner.
The document highlights that the Office of the High Commissioner and other international and regional human rights mechanisms have no immediate access to Abkhazia and the Tskhinvali.
The Council calls for immediate access of the Office of the High Commissioner to Abkhazia and the Tskhinvali regions.