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Russian Press on Tensions with Georgia
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 4 Oct.'06 / 13:32

Russian daily newspapers continued on October 4 to extensively cover Russian-Georgian tensions.

Kommersant
“A massive anti-Georgian campaign has been launched in Russia. Police probe into firms owned by native Georgians. The Federal Migration Service is scrutinizing invitation letters based on which Georgians received entry visas to the Russian Federation. The Georgian National Ballet show in St. Petersburg has been canceled.”

“The U.S. and EU called on Russia to lift sanctions against Georgia… But in response the Russian authorities said that measures will remain in force and recommended that the western powers not meddle in Russian-Georgian relations.”

Nezavisimaya Gazeta
“Tbilisi understands that it will be impossible to neutralize all the negative consequences of sanctions imposed by Russia. So the Georgian leadership has decided to soften its statements in addressing Moscow. President Saakashvili said on Monday that he does not want escalation of tensions with Russia and is always ready for normal relations. But, it seems, that time has already been wasted.”

Rossiyskaya Gazeta
“It is still possible to transfer money from Russia into Georgia, but this might not be possible in few days if the Duma Council [lower house of the Parliament] approves amendments to the Law on Currency Regulations and Currency Control, authorizing the government to block not only postal but also bank transfers… Russian bankers do not seem worried about the issue. Money transfers from Russia into Georgia are not as high as in other countries of the CIS… Meanwhile, Russia wants Belarus to impose visa requirements for Georgian citizens.”

Izvestia – commentary by Aleksandr Dugin
“Saakashvili and his American patrons know very well what they do. They push Russia towards inevitable conflict. Now it is time to ask ourselves, what have we done to avoid this kind of scenario? Yes, we do support opposition like Igor Giorgadze, but is he really so strong and is it enough? Russia’s friends in Georgia are not only Giorgadze’s supporters. More Georgian nationalists understand that their future is only with Russia and that under the wings of NATO Georgia will lose both its identity and territorial integrity. The conservative wing of Georgian society is gradually turning its back on Saakashvili; but while they are not being openly pro-Russian, they are moving towards anti-Americanism. Leader of the influential leftist Labor Party Shalva Natelashvili is more and more often voicing criticism towards the U.S. And the slogan “Together With Europe, but Not With America and Soros” is becoming more popular in Georgia. This is a trend that is worth supporting. If we look at things rationally, we have to admit that Russia has failed to use all its potential in respect to Georgia and yielding to an adventure and provocation of Saakashvili will be very harmful for Russia.”

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