Georgian Envoy Advises Russia to Be “Self-Critical”

Special Representative of the Prime Minister of Georgia for Relations with Russia, Zurab Abashidze, says Russia should be more self-critical rather than always blaming others.

He made the statement in response to Maria Zakharova, a spokesperson for the Russian Foreign Ministry, who stated earlier that the Tbilisi-initiated Otkhozoria-Tatunashvili List, which contains 33 persons convicted of or charged with grave crimes committed against the citizens of Georgia in the breakaway Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions since the 1990s, has nothing to do with Russia.

“This list will have no impact on Russian-Georgian relations. In our opinion, this decision is confrontational and provocative,” Zakharova told Rustavi 2 TV.

Abashidze stated that if Moscow really wants to regulate relations with Georgia by the 10th anniversary of the August war, no one will try to prevent it.

“Instead of blaming others in the usual style, Russia should take to self-critical analyzing of the situation and take steps that the international community and Georgia have been expecting for a long time. In particular, Russia should fulfill its obligations under the 2008 ceasefire agreement, withdraw troops from the occupied regions of Georgia and take concrete steps to de-occupation our territories, “said Zurab Abashidze.

The envoy added that Russia does not recognize the so called Otkhozoria-Tatunashvili List, which means it does not care about the tragic killings of Georgian citizens.

Georgia’s Foreign Minister, David Zalkaliani also commented on Zakharova’s statement.

He called on the Russian Federation to respect the norms of international law and the principle of Georgia’s territorial integrity.

“We still continue putting forward the peace initiatives that are supportive to politically regulate the conflict,” Zalkaliani said

By Thea Morrison

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