(civil.ge) - Georgian Foreign Minister Gela Bezhuashvili told the OSCE Ministerial Council in Brussels on December 4 that Tbilisi's demand to change the current Russian-led negotiating and peacekeeping formats for South Ossetia and Abkhazia aims at revitalizing the peace processes.
For too long, the fate of conflicts on Georgia's territories had been left in the hands of biased and ineffective peace brokers. Currently, the situation is posing as a deteriorating status quo, threatening to dissolve the territories of a sovereign country, Bezhuashvili said while addressing the Foreign Ministerial Council, reports Trend.
He said that few things have changed since the previous Ministerial Council in Ljubljana, Slovenia in December, 2005, which endorsed a Tbilisi-proposed peace plan for South Ossetia.
Instead of demilitarization we see heavy rearmament, instead of improved security and human rights situation we see criminality and contraband growing. Our citizens are subject to rampant violations and in many cases blind deaths due to uncontrolled mined territories, Bezhuashvili said.
He said that the existing ineffective negotiating and peacekeeping formats should change in order to ensure a direct dialogue with the Abkhaz and South Ossetian sides under the patronage of the UN and the OSCE, respectively.
We call for the participation of other international actors as facilitators and guarantors of the peace talks to equalize the dominant role of the Russian Federation, as its credibility as an honest broker of the peace process has long been shaken. We believe this way the process can produce credible results, he said.
Later on December 4 Gela Bezhuashvili told Tbilisi-based Mze TV that the Ministerial Council has failed to adopt a statement on Georgia because of the Russian side's objections.
We had long and intensive consultations with the Russian delegation. All other delegations from other countries were ready to support [a change in the conflict resolution format], but Russia's position was not flexible, Bezhuashvili said.