Weekly digest
Russian President starts to correct mistakes he made during the war with Georgia
07 October, 2010

* NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen paid an official visit to Tbilisi on October 1. Mr. Rasmussen arrived from Brussels where he participated in North Atlantic Council session. It was his first visit to Georgia in the capacity of the Secretary General of Alliance.

During his visit the Secretary General met with the President of Georgia, the Chairman of the Parliament, the Minister of Defense and the Minister of Foreign Affairs.
On the same day NATO Liaison office in Tbilisi

was opened.
’We appreciate Georgia’s participation in NATO mission in Afghanistan. I want to note once again that the decision of the Bucharest summit regarding Georgia’s affiliation with NATO remains in force’, said Mr. Rasmussen at the inauguration ceremony and added that the Liaison Office, opened in Georgia, will support the process of reforms in defense and security areas.


* After the meeting with the President of Georgia, Mr. Rasmussen and Mr. Saakashvili held a joint press conference.
‘Georgia will become a member of NATO if it meets all necessary criteria. We will help you meet the criteria. We are cooperating with Georgia within the framework of Georgia-NATO commission. I am glad that I participated in the opening of NATO Liaison office. It is one more step forward in NATO-Georgia relations’, Rasmussen said at the press conference.

* NATO: ‘Thanks for your service, but...’ – is a title of the article, published by EurasiaNet.org.
According to the article, when Georgia lost its first soldier in Afghanistan about a month ago, the question arose, whether as a result, Georgian public support for the deployment in Afghanistan would suffer.
The author cites Anders Fogh Rasmussen: ‘first of all I would like to stress that we are first and foremost in Afghanistan for our own security to prevent Afghanistan from once again becoming a safe heaven for terrorists, so unfortunately and very sadly some of our soldiers pay the highest price in the fight for our security, for freedom and battle against the terrorism. That is how I see it. I would expect the NATO summit in Lisbon to reaffirm our position which we took already in Bucharest in 2008, that Georgia will become a member of NATO once Georgia fulfills the necessary criteria. In the meantime we shall continue positive cooperation in the framework of Georgia-NATO commission’.
At the end of the article, the journalist concludes: ‘Georgia’s NATO accession is as far away as ever, regardless of what Georgia is doing in Afghanistan. If the casualties continue to mount, Georgians could be increasingly asking, just why is this war good for us?’

* President of Russia Dmitry Medvedev sent telegram congratulating de-facto President Sergey Baghapsh with Abkhazian Independence Day.
‘This festivity is symbol of Abkhazian people’s long-wished aspiration to independently rule their fate, live in a peaceful and kind neighboring surrounding. Choice of Abkhazian people to develop independently has come true. Democratic basis of state structure becomes perfect, wide-range social-economic transformation takes place,’ Medvedev stated in his telegram.

* Russian President has started to correct mistakes he made during the war with Georgia.
Dmitry Medvedev held a Security Council sitting, which discussed the issues of improvement of the means of communications in Russian army, maintenance of order and safeguarding the security of the country.
‘Communications are to be modernized in the army. The Georgia-Russia war two years ago proved the necessity of it. According to the experts, it was one of the main drawbacks of Russian army’, Medvedev said.

* Unrecognized Western Sahara followed the step of Russia to recognize South Ossetian ‘independence’. Russian agencies inform that Advisor of President of so called South Ossetian Republic Konstantine Kochiev declared about it at the meeting with the representatives of Western Sahara’s ruling party.
Formal documents and diplomatic resolutions have not been signed yet.

* Tskhinvali regime confirms that works are under way to establish a so called border, said the President’s deputy representative for Post-Conflict regulation Merab Chigoev.
Chigoev says that Tskhinvali regime has addressed Russian Federation and Georgian government to jointly carry out works of demarcation of the border of Tskhinvali regime. He alleges that only Russian side responded to the proposal.
As Georgian MIA informs, Russian Federal Security Service started works on the demarcation of the illegal border in Shida Kartli on 29 September, 2010. These actions of the occupants bear apparent provocative character and they hinder Georgian citizens from freely moving in the region.
Russian border guards refute the information of the Georgian side.

* Four Georgian soldiers - Colonel Ramaz Gogiashvili, Sergeant Davit Tsetskhladze, Corporal Giorgi Kolkhitashvili and Corporal Nugzar Kalandadze were killed during performing the peacekeeping mission in Afghanistan.
According to the Ministry of Defense, the soldiers exploded on the landmine.
Under the Decree N.955 of the President of Georgia, Mukhran Shukvani, Nugzar Kalandadze, Giorgi Kolkhitashvili, Davit Tsetskhladze and Ramaz Gogiashvili were posthumously awarded with the orders of Vakhtang Gorgasali of the 1st Degree.

*Dmitry Medvedev considers Byelorussian government’s approach to recognition of Abkhazian and so called South Ossetian independence as dishonorable.

Medvedev said Russia would take it into account in relations with President of Byelorussia Alexander Lukashenka.
Medvedev said Lukashenka confirmed his readiness to recognize the independence of Abkhazia and so called South Ossetia in the presence of five colleagues and added that corresponding minutes of the meeting were available.
‘Later the issue became a subject of political trade, but Russia never trades its principles. I had said earlier that recognition or non-recognition of these two new states is a sovereign right of every country. And we have never exerted pressure in this regard,’ Medvedev stated.