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Meeting with the Co-Chairs of the Geneva Discussions on Security and Stability in the South Caucasus Held at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs

SUKHUM -- The Acting Minister, Deputy Foreign Minister of the Republic of Abkhazia, Irakli Khintba has had a meeting with the Co-Chairs of the Geneva Discussions on Security and Stability in the South Caucasus – Philipp Lefort, Antti Turunen and Andre Deshitsa. Participants of the meeting discussed issues related to the coming round of the Geneva Talks.

v The meeting was not attended by the media representatives. After the negotiations Irakli Khintba summarized their results: "It was a thorough conversation. There was a constructive discussion of a range of issues related to the agenda of the coming round of the Geneva Talks. Beside that we discussed possibilities to modify the form of holding the next round of negotiations and a number of organizational issues. We also touched upon the security situation. It is important that the Co-Chairs noted significant improvement of the general situation in the Gal District".

Commenting on the new proposals of the Co-Chairs Irakli Khintba noted: "The main proposal implies that there will be an interlocutory document which will stipulate the commitment of the participants of the Geneva Discussions to the principle of nonuse of force. We have considered this document and think that it is acceptable in terms of improving of the environment of negotiations and reaching the main objective of the Discussions – signing legally binding agreement on non-use of force between Abkhazia and Georgia. We will make our comments regarding the text of the document and the Russian and the South Ossetian sides will also make their proposals. We will discuss and consider the draft project and if we find that it can establish a basis for positive development of the negotiation process we might support it. ".

As for the possibility to improve the format of the Geneva Discussions Irakli Khintba noted: "The proposals of the Abkhaz side remain in force. We do not agree with prolonging the Geneva Discussions for two days and more. One day is enough for us. At the same time we continue working in to working groups which complies with the principle of the Medvedev-Sarkozy Agreement. However it does not mean that these actual issues of special interest cannot be discussed by all participants in the framework of extra organizational forms of the Discussions. We will continue to uphold our position and proposals", - Khintba concluded.

The next round of the negotiations is planned for March 26-27.

Source: MFA Abkhazia

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