The Republic of Georgia threatens peace and security in the Caucasus

Today after more than two years since the army of Mikhail Saakashvilli's regime attacked the civilian population of South Ossetia and Russian peacemakers, the Republic of Georgia has not abandoned its aggressive course of confrontation and is harboring plans for revenge.

Now the military power of Tbilisi (the capital of the Republic of Georgia) is actually higher than in August, 2008 not without the help of some foreign countries. The Republic of Georgia is substantially strengthening its armed forces, giving priority to airpower.

The Republic of Georgia has concentrated considerable troop numbers along its borders with Abkhazia and South Ossetia. It insistently refuses to take obligations for non-application of force against Tskhinval and Sukhum (the capitals of South Ossetia and Abkhazia).

The Republic of Georgia withdrew itself from all peacemaking agreements and therefore put the safety and security in the region under threat. This issue is focused on by the Geneva Discussions on the Transcaucasus which are according to agreements by Dmitry Medvedev and Nicolas Sarkozy aimed at providing stable security to Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

The demand to "reoccupy" the new independent Transcaucasus Republics made by the Georgian side is absurd. The Russian military contingents are placed there legally on the basis of bilateral intergovernmental agreements. Tbilisi's proposal to conclude a non-aggression pact with Russia is also baseless since Russia has never attacked the Republic of Georgia. Lately Tbilisi tries to continue its traditional dictatorial policy over small [ethnic groups] inhabiting the country. Life for Armenians and Azerbaijanians in the country is becoming harder by the day.

The Republic of Georgia has proclaimed a so-called "Strategy of peaceful reintegration of the occupied territories" without asking Abkhazians and South Ossetians if they wish to be "reintegrated".

The speech of Mikhail Saakashvilli during the 65th Session of UN General Assembly is remarkable in this regard. His every word shows disregard for the choice of the Abkhazian and South Ossetian peoples as well as firm confidence in the right of the Georgian government to define their destiny. This impression cannot be effaced by Saakashvilli's promises of a "happy future as part of the Republic of Georgia".

Instead of taking practical steps towards normalization of relations with Abkhazians and South Ossetians Tbilisi commenced massive activity on international platforms aiming at discrediting the young Caucasian republics as well as the Russian Federation, which secures their safety.

Tbilisi is making considerable efforts to hinder the expansion of the foreign relations of Abkhazia and South Ossetia and to isolate them on the international scene. The Georgian Act on Occupied Territories implores lawless sanctions on foreign citizens who visit Abkhazia and South Ossetia without the permission of Tbilisi. As for the citizens of Russia, they become victims of Georgian oppression regardless of their ever being to Abkhazia or South Ossetia. Tbilisi also makes obstacles for international organizations' representatives who are due to visit the Republic of Georgia.

Tbilisi says it is willing for dialogue with Russia on any issue, but at the same time it's taking purposeful steps aimed at further deterioration in relations.

In spite of Tbilisi's anti-Russian politics, the Russian Federation keeps to constructive standpoints both in international organizations and in the Geneva Discussions.

Russia stands for the formulation of the non-application of force between the Republic of Georgia and Abkhazia and South Ossetia, proposed unilateral declarations on non-application of force and has shown its readiness to be a warrant of such obligations.

On October 18, 2010 Russia withdrew its troops from the village of Perevi that stands in the disputed near-border area between Georgia and South Ossetia. So The Russian Federation showed its good will and proved its commitment to peace and stability in the region.

This act crowned the fulfillment of agreements between Medvedev and Sarkozy by the Russian side. Meanwhile Russia is upping efforts to provide operational mechanisms to prevent and react to incidents around the borders of the said states. Russia continues to support the peoples of the young republics in the form of humanitarian actions and other measures.

The Russian Federation believes that responsible international players should refrain from direct or indirect encouragement of the Georgian government which does not wish to reject the previous confrontational approach towards its neighbors.

The regime of Mikhail Saakashvilli not only serves as a factor of tension and insecurity in the Transcaucasus but also insistently tries to turn the whole process of international cooperation into a hostage of its vicious politics. This must not be admitted.

[Source: By Anatoli Pitisa, Russian Acting Ambassador to Botswana, Mmegionline, Botswana, 02Nov10]

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The Question of South Ossetia
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