SUKHUM -- Abkhazia has restrained its participation in the 12th round of Geneva discussions held in the framework of arrangements between presidents Medvedev and Sarkozy, President Sergey Bagapsh declared today, delivering his annual message to the Parliament.
“During regular meetings our representatives continue to insist on the necessity of signing an agreement on international guarantees of security and the non-use of force which will make it possible to eliminate to a considerable degree the threat of a new conflict with Georgia. However the Georgian party avoids discussing such a document, insisting on withdrawal of Russian troops from the territory of Abkhazia and South Ossetia and deployment of international forces there what is, of course, absolutely unacceptable for our countries. Moreover, we have a stale confidence that the international mediators of the discussions connive actively at the Georgian party. And until the situation changes, we will not be able to participate in them”, the President said.
Speaking about the Geneva discussions, the head of state pointed to their “broad enough international context and high level of representation of the parties participating in them”.
According to Bagapsh, apart from discussing security issues and humanitarian problems, in Geneva representatives of Abkhazia have the chance to bring to the attention of European and American partners directly, without mediators the position of the Abkhaz party on a broad spectrum of political and humanitarian issues. It makes the Geneva talks a convenient diplomatic forum for direct contacts and information interchange with the European Union, the United Nations, OSCE, and the USA, the President considers.
“Abkhazia does not have another channel like this for today. That's why we have made a pause for the mediators to have a possibility to prepare concrete, well thought-out proposals. Only then we will be able to continue work in a constructive course”, the President said.
A certain positive role in the information interchange in relation to security issues and reduction of border tension, according to the head of state, is also played by the Mechanism on incident prevention and response, developed during the fourth round of Geneva discussions. Regular meetings in the city of Gal of representatives of the Abkhaz, Georgian and Russian parties, in cooperation with representatives of the United Nations, OSCE and the European Union are held within its framework.