The files we follow: Karabakh Situation ; Abkhazia and South Ossetia / Georgia Conflict, Georgia – EU/ US/Russia/Ukraine Relations and Georgian Domestic Policy, South Caucasian energy, trade and transport issues, Human Rights in South Caucasus, Various foreign policies Armenia, Azerbaijan, Georgia.
The 59th cycle of the Geneva International Discussions took place on December 5 and 6 in Geneva on both security and humanitarian aspects. At the centre of the discussions were the “increased tensions along the administrative border of South Ossetia” and in particular the fatal shooting on 6 November, according to the co-chairs press release. The participants agreed on the “relatively stable” nature of the situation and on the need to resume the work of the MPRI in the city of Gali. The US side limited itself, as usual, to injunctions aimed at Russia.
These meetings took place a month after the death of Tamaz Ginturi, a 58-year-old Georgian citizen, killed by Russian occupying forces in South Ossetia near the village of Kirbali while, according to Civil.ge, the latter had gone to pray in St George Church in Lomisi, which Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Mikhail Galuzin justified in these terms from Geneva: “we are not talking about someone who deliberately aims to kill someone; these people illegally crossed the border of South Ossetia, they threatened the border guards with an axe, which is a very serious bladed weapon, they wanted to run over our border guards with their car; warning shots were first fired into the air then into the tires of the vehicle.”
The Georgian side, according to its Ministry of Foreign Affairs, insisted on “the need to respect the ceasefire agreement signed by Russia on 12 August 2008, under the mediation of the European Union, as well as on the themes of the return of displaced persons and refugees from occupied territories”. But the Russian, Abkhazian and South Ossetian sides once again withdrew from the discussions when it came time to address this issue. Indeed, according to the Russian Foreign Ministry “the politicized resolution of the United Nations General Assembly on internally displaced persons and refugees, presented every year by Georgia, remains a serious irritant that hinders cooperation on humanitarian issues at Geneva“, a point of view associated with the South Ossetian side which speaks of “artificial politicization of the problem” and which drew attention to “the flagrant violations by Georgia of the rights of Ossetians, originating from the region of Kazbegi (Tyrsygom), who for several years have not been able to access their ancestral villages”.
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