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Medvedev Points to Georgia when Warning of Threats to Sochi Olympics
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 20 Feb.'11 / 01:05

Russian President, Dmitry Medvedev, warned of threats to the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympic Games and mentioned Georgia in this context on February 18.

"Forces that would impede holding of the Olympic Games must be identified and brought to justice if we are talking about the citizens of our country. You all understand, that there also are certain problems related with our neighbor - Georgia; so everything that requires heightened attention should be done by the Foreign Minister, law enforcement agencies, security structures. Appropriate barriers should be put on the way of any provocations," Medvedev said.

He was speaking in Sochi at a meeting of Russia's National Security Council.

Head of the Federal Security Service (FSB) in Russia's Republic of Karachay-Cherkessia in the northwest of North Caucasus region, said in December 16, that Georgia was trying to destabilize situation in the border areas with Russia in order to thwart Sochi Olympics.

A group of Georgian lawmakers from parliamentary committees on foreign affairs and compatriots living abroad, as well as the parliamentary ad hoc commission on territorial integrity discussed in November what should be Georgia's position over holding of Olympics in Sochi. Although no formal decision has yet been taken, after that meeting, ruling party lawmakers said that it was necessary "to convince the international Olympic Committee, National Olympic Committees and the international community in the necessity of holding 2014 Winter Olympics in a different country.”

Apart of the factor of occupation of Abkhazia, a ruling party lawmaker Nugzar Tsiklauri said after that meeting in November, Sochi Olympic Games “are planned to be held on the territory considered to be a place of genocide of Circassians.”

“According to the Olympic Charter, it is impossible to hold Olympic Games on the territory where the genocide of a nation took place,” MP Tsiklauri said.

Also in November Giorgi Baramidze, Georgia’s deputy prime minister and state minister for Euro-Atlantic integration, said that he personally "shares sentiments” of a group of Georgian lawmakers who expressed their opposition to holding of the Olympics in Sochi.

“I personally express solidarity with the members of parliament, because I understand sentiments, I understand why they think that Russia does not deserve to be the host of the Olympic Games - because the Olympic movement is something different that Russia demonstrates," Baramidze said in November.

Georgia was itself competing for hosting 2014 Winter Olympic Games in Borjomi and Bakuriani. But after Georgia’s bid was eliminated, President Saakashvili said in February, 2007, that Georgia would support Russia’s bid to hold the Olympics in Sochi.

“Olympic games in Sochi would foster peaceful processes in this region that has always been associated with conflicts. So in this regard, [Olympic Games in Sochi] will be a positive incentive for regional cooperation.” Saakashvili said in 2007.

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