Georgia, Tbilisi, 31 Jan. / Trend N.Kirtskhalia /
The main task for today is prevention of new escalation of tensions between Russia and Georgia. That is adherence to the policy of pragmatism, for which the government of Bidzina Ivanishvili has headed, Georgian Defense Minister Irakli Alasania said in an interview to BBC Russian service on Thursday.
He stressed that it is very important for Georgia.
Alasania believes that relations with Russia should begin with trade and cultural ties.
"We have no illusions that in the near future, Russia will change its political views on the priority of Georgia to be a member of NATO or the EU, or change its attitude to the territorial integrity of the country. But we have to start somewhere. And I think that pragmatic approach of Bidzina Ivanishvili and our government will bring results," he stressed.
Large scale military action was launched in South Ossetia in Georgia on August 8, 2008. Later, Russian troops occupied Tskhinvali and expelled the Georgian military. Russia recognised the independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia late in August. Tbilisi ended diplomatic relations with Moscow in response and has announced the two unrecognised republics of Abkhazia and South Ossetia to be occupied territories.