#44 - JRL 2009-198 - JRL Home

Ex-Georgian PM calls for talks between Tbilisi, Sukhumi, Tskhinvali

MOSCOW. Oct 28 (Interfax) - Zurab Nogaideli, the leader of the
Georgian opposition party Fair Georgia and a former prime minister, has
spoken in favor of unity between Georgia, Abkhazia and South Ossetia and
called for starting dialogue with Russia without any preconditions.

"Georgia's unification is the main goal, and everything should be
aimed at attaining it, and all the rest is just mechanisms," Nogaideli
said at a press conference in Moscow following a three-day visit to

"There is no and cannot be a solution to this issue through the use
of force, especially after last year's events, and therefore it is
necessary to hold dialogue, although not about status for the time
being," he said.

"True, we should conduct negotiations about Georgia's unification
with Abkhazia and South Ossetia rather than with Russia. But any
negotiations can bring about a result only if there is no bitter
confrontation between Georgia and Russia, and it would be wrong to set
preconditions before the negotiations," he said.

"However, [Georgian President Mikheil] Saakashvili has put forward
a lot of impracticable preconditions for starting negotiations, and we
do not really see a desire to have dialogue on Saakashvili's part,"
Nogaideli said.

He praised results of his meetings in Moscow with members of the
Georgian, Abkhaz, and Ossetian communities and with Deputy Foreign
Minister Grigory Karasin.

Nogaideli, however, did not specify what exactly he liked about the
talks with Karasin. "We presented our vision to him, and this vision has
apparently fallen on fertile ground," Nogaideli said.

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