De facto Ministry of Abkhazia criticizes Council of Europe’s support towards new peace initiative of Georgia
07 May, 2018
De facto Ministry of Abkhazia criticizes Council of Europe’s support towards new peace initiative of Georgia
The de facto Abkhazian Foreign Ministry of Georgia’s breakaway region of Abkhazia has responded to the resolution of the Council of Europe.

"On May 2, 2018, the Committee of the Deputies of Ministers of the Council of Europe adopted a new resolution, reflecting strong support for Georgia's territorial integrity. The resolution also says that there is a conflict between Georgia and Russia. The Council of Europe positively assessed the new peace initiative of the Government of Georgia - A Step
for a Better Future.

Another odious resolution adopted by the Council of Europe causes only regret and frustration. We again have to note that the documents adopted by the Council of Europe are biased and politicized. It should also be noted that all the decisions of the Council of Europe and other international organizations are adopted without the involvement of the Abkhaz side. Consequently, they do not reflect the real situation and seriously damage the process of establishing a full-scale inter-state dialogue between the parties," reads the statement of the de facto Foreign Ministry.
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Abandoned Abkhazia Government Building

They also said that "it is unacceptable to talk about the conflict between Georgia and Abkhazia in the context of the Georgian-Russian conflict ". According to them, "the documents adopted by various European structures do not have legal force and are of populist and propagandistic nature."
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Abandoned Council of Ministries Building in Abkhazia

"As for the so called peace initiatives of Georgia, they can be assessed as another populist move to impress Western partners,"- said the de facto Ministry.

As a reminder, the government of Georgia has recently approved a new peaceful initiative named a Step toward a Better Future, involving three main directions. The Georgian government is going to implement these initiatives in order to improve the humanitarian and socio-economic conditions of people living in Georgia’s breakaway regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (so-called South Ossetia), attain tangible benefits, promote contacts, free movement and relations across the dividing lines, based on mutual interests.
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Enguri Bridge, the only place which connects Abkhazia and Georgia nowadays

As the State Minister of Georgia Ketevan Tsikhelashvili explained, the package of legislative amendments covers three main directions: Encourage, expand and simplify trade across dividing lines through creating new opportunities; Create additional opportunities for quality education and simplify access to all levels of education both internally and internationally; To ease an access of the population of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia to various services and benefits. Including an introduction of a status-neutral mechanism of identification with a personal number for the residents of the two regions that does not relate to citizenship but enables to access a range of different services.
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So-called border of Abkhazia

Council of Europe welcomed new peace initiative of Georgia. The Committee of Ministers' Deputies of the Council of Europe at its 1315th session adopted yet another decision on the agenda item “Council of Europe and the Conflict in Georgia”, in which the CoE Member States reaffirm their strong support for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity holding Russia legally accountable for exercising actual control on Georgia’s occupied territories.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia states that this decision is an important step forward in terms of the international assessment of the situation in Georgia’s occupied territories. The decision outlines clearly the position that Georgia is prevented from exercising legitimate jurisdiction over its regions due to the Russian Federation’s continuing military presence there.
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Gagra, a town in Abkhazia

Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) are the occupied territories of Georgia, claiming independence from the country.

Russia's initial recognition of the independence of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) occurred in the aftermath of the Russo-Georgian War, six months after the western recognition of the unilateral declaration of independence by Kosovo from Serbia in February 2008.
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Railway station in Sokhumi, the capital of the breakaway Abkhazia

Russian President Dmitry Medvedev issued the order of recognizing Abkhazia and so-called South Ossetia on the 26th August 2008.

Russia’s creeping border occupation is observed between Georgia’s controlled territory and Tskhinvali till now.

Related stories:

Council of Europe welcomes new peace initiative of Georgia to promote interaction with Abkhazia and Tskhinvali

Government to offer benefits and services to people living in Georgia’s breakaway Abkhazia and Tskhinvali regions

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US Assistant Secretary visits occupation line: "We call on the Russia to withdraw the recognition of these regions"
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