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Saakashvili: UN Vote Russia’s Shame and Diplomatic Failure
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 10 Sep.'09 / 12:41

President Saakashvili said that passing of a resolution by UN General Assembly, which recognizes right of displaced persons to return to Abkhazia and South Ossetia, was Georgia’s major diplomatic victory and a defeat for Russian diplomacy.

In a late-night televised statement on September 9, Saakashvili said that it “is not a simple resolution,” as Russia “used all forms of blackmailing and bribery, which it had at its disposal and which it inherited from the Soviet Union” trying to convince countries not to support the resolution.

“This diplomatic defeat is both strange and shameful for the Russia’s current government, because in accordance with this resolution, people, who were expelled and deprived of their property, should be returned back,” Saakashvili said.

“It [Russia] has intimidated some officials, who should have chaired these sittings [at the UN] and who should have discussed procedural issues [prior to the voting],” he said. 

“Despite Russia’s huge pressure… this time all EU-member states supported the right of unconditional return of internally displaced persons,” Saakashvili added.

Cyprus was among those 78 countries, which abstained. The resolution was passed with 48 countries voting in favor and 19 – against.

Saakashvili also said that Russia’s rhetoric that the international community and Georgia should face the new reality that emerged after the August war was totally unacceptable and added: “Hitler was speaking with the same rhetoric after annexation of Czechoslovakia.”

He also said that “no one should have any illusion” that Russia would have “normal negotiations” with Georgia “after what it has done.”

“If Russia is not supporting it [return of displaced persons], then on what else we have to talk with the current leadership of Russia?” Saakashvili said.

He also said that “although Russia is spending lots of money, it will never find a force in Georgia, which may serve as its foothold” within the country.

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