Georgian ex-president supports aid suspension to Georgia before elections
Georgia, Tbilisi, April 2 / Trend N. Kirtzkhalia /
Georgian ex-President Eduard Shevardnadze considers the initiative to suspend aid made by a group of U.S. congressmen as 'legitimate'. They have been urged to terminate the rendering of annual aid to Georgia before the autumn parliamentary democratic elections.
According to the Georgian authorities, several U.S. congressmen's initiative is connected with the work of billionaire Bidzina Ivanishvili's lobby which paid for it.
"Congressmen are urged to suspend all aid rendered to Georgia until they are convinced that the authorities will conduct fair and democratic elections," Shevardnadze said in an interview with Asaval-Dasavali weekly. "It is natural, because only a democratic Georgia can be the U.S partner in the region."
The ex-president said that the U.S attaches particular importance to a democratic feature of the parliamentary elections because it feels this is the key to the development of society.
"The U.S. Ambassador's statements said that all attempts to falsify the election results will be stopped by the international community," Shevardnadze said.
However, he admits that survey results recently published by the U.S. National Democratic Institute may be real. The party in power can be supported by 42 per cent, compared to 11 per cent of Bidzina Ivanishvili's 'Georgia Dream' movement which is considered as the main rival party of Mikhail Saakashvili's party.
Catholicons-Patriarch of All Georgia Ilia II has appealed to the diplomatic corps accredited in the country to ensure fair and democratic elections in the country. Shevardnadze also considered this as being important.