Trend European Desk Commentator Elmira Tariverdiyeva
Georgian Foreign Minister Grigol Vashadze completed a two-day working visit to Yerevan on October 4. He met with Armenian President Serzh Sargsyan, as well as Armenian Foreign Minister Edward Nalbandian in Yerevan. Foreign Ministers of both countries agreed about the meeting at the recent UN General Assembly in New York.
Mutual assurances in friendship, discussion of regional security and other bilateral issues were the results of the visit. However, the protocol meetings with top leaders of Armenia were not the purpose of Vashadze's visit to Yerevan. His visit aimed at sounding out the possibilities to find surprises which Georgia will face from troubled neighbors in the nearest future.
Today, the eternal "Armenian" problem of Armenian historical homeland in different countries takes new and quite dangerous outlines for Georgia.
Yerevan knows no rest for a long time due to Georgian region of Samtskhe-Javakheti, on its misfortune inhabited mainly by Armenians.
Therefore, at the first opportunity, Armenian officials do everything possible, trying to give a political tinge to the social problems of the Armenian population, living in the Georgian region.
Armenia's allegations that the Armenian population, living in the region of Samtskhe-Javakheti is oppressed by the Georgian authorities and hints that it would be nice to be maximally independent of the center, that is from Tbilisi, have been repeatedly voiced.
"Javakhk's Diaspora of Russia" made a statement on the eve of Vashadze's visit to Armenia. The text fully illustrates the far-reaching plans of Armenians worldwide. Their most powerful force is the diaspora.
"The Georgian authorities turn the country into a mono-ethnic one. Nationalism and discrimination in the country continue to develop. It is obvious that the Georgian authorities violate the existing international standards," the document says.
"Javakhk's Diaspora of Russia" calls upon the Georgian authorities at the end of the document to officially declare Samtskhe-Javakheti as a national-cultural autonomy.
But one should not be deceived. In fact, the Armenians mean autonomy as the beginning to amputate the regions of other countries, populated by Armenians. Let Nagorno-Karabakh, populated by Armenians, be a vivid example of such events for Georgians. Nagorno-Karabakh, being the autonomy of Azerbaijan, could not escape attempts at secession from the republic and the dispute over has not been resolved for 20 years.
On the other hand, Georgia must not forget another important detail in its relations with Armenia - the friendship between Yerevan and Moscow. Armenia did not support Georgia's resolution on refugees within the 65-th session of the UN General Assembly. It is an excellent example of these historic partnership.
The reasons are obvious. Armenia is dependent on Russia as much as a small and economically weak republic without any resources, even with partially closed borders can be dependent from a powerful neighbor.
Taking into account the state of war with Azerbaijan, the end of which is not visible yet, it becomes clear that Yerevan will neglect friendly relations with Georgia for a long time to please Moscow. Moreover, Armenia can do everything to inflate the problem of Samtskhe-Javakheti and ultimately destabilize the situation in the country to weaken Georgia and discredit the current power, which has no diplomatic relations with Russia.
There are all the prerequisites for this. Armenian journalists' question to Vashadze during a press-conference in Yerevan concerning Javakhk residents' problems with education fully demonstrates the contradictions between Yerevan and Tbilisi.
Georgian Foreign Minister rightly noted that there is no place called Javakh on the world geographical map. He pointed out that about 103 Armenian schools were repaired within the state program in Samtskhe-Javakheti, which the Armenians persistently call in their own way.
However, no matter how the Georgians tried to smooth out conflicts with Armenia, there is no guarantee that the Armenian authorities' assurances of friendship will prevent the change of Samtskhe-Javakheti into maligned Javakh and not to repeat the fate of Nagorno-Karabakh.