Wednesday, September 3, 2008

Statement regarding the Extraordinary European Council Meeting

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia commends the conclusions adopted by the extraordinary meeting of the leaders of the EU member states unanimously condemning the Russian Federation’s decision to recognize the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. It is underlined in the statement that a peaceful and lasting solution to the conflict must be based on full respect for the principles of independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia.

In compliance with the Georgian Parliament’s Resolution of 28 August 2008 the Georgian side remains committed to the ceasefire agreement achieved on 12 August 2008 on the basis of the European Union’s mediation efforts and welcomes the European Council’s decision on the necessity of full and immediate implementation of the aforesaid agreement.

The Georgian side welcomes the European Council’s decision to participate actively in developing an international monitoring mechanism in the conflict regions so as to replace additional Russian military troops deployed on the territory of Georgia outside the conflict zone, as provided for in point 5 of the ceasefire agreement.

The Georgian side attaches a paramount importance to the European Council’s decision to further strengthen the European Union’s role in securing a peaceful resolution to the conflicts in Georgia.

The Georgian side expresses its gratitude to the European Union for its assistance already rendered or planned towards economic rehabilitation of Georgia, including the regions affected by hostilities, and commends the European Union’s readiness to further deepen cooperation with Georgia.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia positively assesses the European Union’s decision to postpone meetings on the negotiation of the Partnership Agreement with Russia until Russian troops have withdrawn to the positions held prior to 7 August, as stipulated in the Ceasefire Agreement.

The Georgian side expresses its readiness to cooperate actively with EU member states as well as EU institutes to ensure full and timely implementation of the decisions of the Extraordinary European Council Meeting.