Former Georgian president wants Georgian troops to return from Afghanistan
Georgia, Tbilisi, Nov. 29 / Trend N. Kirtskhalia /
Former Georgian President Eduard Shevardnadze has called for the withdrawal of Georgian troops from Afghanistan.
"Our military has nothing to do in Afghanistan," Shevardnadze said in an interview today with the Georgian Asaval-Dasavali newspaper.
In Afghanistan, there are about 1,000 Georgian soldiers serving in areas under the control of the United States and France as part of international peacekeeping forces. Over the past six months, the Georgian military has lost five soldiers.
Shevardnadze said President Mikhail Saakashvili's intention to increase the number of Georgian troops in Afghanistan "does not serve the people's interests."
He also protested Saakashvili's statements that the Afghan people "kicked out the Soviet invaders."
"This was not so," he said. "Our troops were withdrawn from Afghanistan only based on a decision of the Soviet Union, in which I also played a key role."
Shevardnadze also stated that opening the border with Russia may lead to Georgia's destruction, similar to Afghanistan and Chechnya.
"This is a very real prospect, as the border has become uncontrolled," he said.