EU will send monitors to Georgia

Javier Solana made the announcement as European leaders began an emergency summit on the crisis in Brussels, reported dpa.

Divisions have emerged on how to react to Russia's military action, with the UK calling for a review of EU relations with Moscow and France urging dialogue.

Russia has warned further support for Georgia would be a "historic" mistake.

Speaking at the EU's headquarters, Mr Solana said he hoped its members would approve the plan to send monitors to Georgia over the coming weeks, and that they could be in place by mid-October.

"It will be a mission in the hundreds, not a huge one," he said, adding that no decisions on imposing sanctions on Russia would be taken at Monday's summit.

Earlier, the Russian foreign ministry said Moscow was ready to consider participating in an international police force in Georgia, allowing peace monitors in all areas of the country.

The EU already has some 40 observers on the ground in Georgia and diplomats say up to 200 could be deployed in the coming weeks.

The BBC's Oana Lungescu in Brussels says the summit is meant to send a signal of support for Georgia, but the EU remains deeply divided on how to respond to Russia's military interventions in the country's two breakaway regions - Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Moscow formally recognised the independence of the two regions last week, in a move widely condemned by the West but which Russian President Dmitry Medvedev has said was irrevocable.

But calls for a fundamental change in the relationship with Russia are unlikely to get the support required, correspondents say, as many EU states are wary of alienating Russia, an important trading partner and a major energy supplier.

Monday's meeting is also expected to bring promises of substantial economic aid, a free trade agreement and easier travel arrangements for Georgians.

Ahead of the summit, UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown urged the EU to suspend talks on a long-delayed partnership agreement with Russia.

"In light of Russia's actions we should suspend negotiations on a successor to the partnership and co-operation agreement," his spokesman told reporters in London.

Mr Brown earlier called for a "root-and-branch review" of the EU's relationship with Russia, saying no nation should be allowed to exert an energy stranglehold over Europe.

But France, which currently holds the EU presidency and brokered the ceasefire agreement between Russia and Georgia last month, said Europe did not want to "recreate the Cold War".

By pointing the finger at Russia, we isolate it and continue to trample on it," Prime Minister Francois Fillon said. "This is not the way France has chosen. It's not the way Europe has chosen... and the word 'sanctions' is not on the agenda.

"The word on the agenda is 'dialogue', and I think the president of the French republic will put a certain number of initiatives to his European counterparts... that he will himself head for the capitals of Russia and Georgia again to promote the cause of peace."

Georgians hold up their flag at an anti-Russian protest at Trafalgar Square, London (1 September 2008)

Mr Fillon also denied accusations that Europe was "too indulgent" towards Russia, saying the attitude of the US government had hardly been more effective.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel also said the EU should not break off dialogue with Moscow but instead "speak clearly", echoing earlier comments by Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

Georgians are holding rallies in Tbilisi and in other European capitals to coincide with the Brussels summit.

Thousands gathered at Tbilisi's Freedom Square, waving the Georgian flag and chanting "Long Live Georgia" and "Stop Russia".

President Mikhail Saakashvili told the crowd that Georgia was "united as never before" and urged EU leaders not to give up in the face of Russian "aggression".

"Today we can say that Georgia is not alone, because the whole world is standing beside us," he said. "Georgia will never stop resisting, Georgia will never surrender."

Earlier, Russia's Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov warned the US and its allies that supporting President Saakashvili would be a historic mistake, and called for an arms embargo "while a different government turns Georgia into a normal state".

"To protect the region from the recurrence of violence, Russia will continue taking measures to punish the guilty, so that this regime is never able to do evil," he said.

Speaking in Moscow, Mr Lavrov said Russia had returned to the world stage as a responsible state which could defend its citizens.

Mr Lavrov's comments follow Mr Medvedev's redefining of Russia's foreign policy principles.

Russia, the Kremlin leader declared, would no longer accept a situation whereby a single country, like the US, sought global domination.

Mr Medvedev also pledged to defend the lives and dignity of Russian citizens, wherever they are located.

He made it clear that there were parts of the world where Russia sees itself as having privileged interests.

Russia's conflict with Georgia began on 7 August when Georgia tried to regain control of South Ossetia by force, and Russia counter-attacked deep into Georgia.

China calls for healthy, stable military ties with U.S.
China calls for healthy, stable military ties with U.S.
Disney to layoff about 32,000 workers in first half of 2021
Disney to layoff about 32,000 workers in first half of 2021
India records 44,489 new coronavirus cases
India records 44,489 new coronavirus cases
Loading Bars
China calls for healthy, stable military ties with U.S.
Italy reports 29,003 new coronavirus cases, 822 deaths - health ministry
Russia's Sputnik V developers call on AstraZeneca to try combining vaccines
Paris does not recognize so-called "Nagorno-Karabakh Republic" - Foreign Ministry
Recovery of oil prices has positive impact on Kazakhstan’s external balances - IHS Markit
Group of German medical experts arrives in Kyrgyzstan to fight COVID-19
Georgian NCDC Head urges people over 70 to stay at home except in necessary circumstances
Iran, Russia to cooperate on COVID-19 vaccine development
Bitcoin price down 12.7%
Armenian eco-terror in Karabakh constitute serious threat to peace and security in region - opinion
Hungary, Poland double down to try to eject rule-of-law condition from EU budget
Over 3,500 coronavirus-related deaths recorded in Moscow in October
Belavia resumes regular flights from Baku to Minsk in early December
Iran hopes Kish-Istanbul-Abadan flights to improve its trade
Kazakhstan Railways opens tender to buy welding equipment
Georgia to support businesses amid new coronavirus restrictions
WB extends deadline for implementation of agricultural project in Azerbaijan
Turkey steps up inspections as coronavirus pandemic figures climb
Cavushoglu and Stoltenberg discuss situation in Karabakh
Swedish royals test positive for COVID-19
England reveals new regional COVID tiers in fight against coronavirus
Azerbaijani gymnasts reach finals of 36th European Championship in Ukraine
Georgia continues to support its citizens amid COVID-19 pandemic
News on return of Azerbaijani soldier captured by Armenians false, relative says
Azerbaijan sends note of protest to France
Ample opportunities for investments to be created in Karabakh – minister
Azerbaijani's negotiations with UAE on renewables nearing completion
Kazakhstan, Mongolia eye signing roadmap for trade, economic co-op
Russia bans import of tomatoes from Uzbekistan’s Fergana region
36th COMCEC session opens under chairmanship of Turkish president (PHOTO)
Uzbek Ministry of Finance publishes draft law on increasing taxes on gasoline, diesel
Russian Gazprombank predicts Azerbaijan's economic recovery in 2021
iPhone 12 Pro Max and iPhone 12 Mini now at Azercell Exclusive shops!
Iran becomes self-sufficient in building oil, gas platforms
Cotton growing in Azerbaijan hits record - agriculture ministry
Italian municipalities adopt documents expressing solidarity with Azerbaijani people
Uzbekistan to grow industrial cannabis in Sardoba district
Azerbaijan detects 3,705 new COVID-19 cases, 1,609 recoveries
Turkmen Ministry of Construction opens tender for equestrian sports complex construction
Azerbaijani, Saudi FMs exchange views on current situation in Karabakh
Uzbekistan reveals data on its ICT sphere enterprises and organizations
Azerbaijan to export persimmons to Slovakia and Czech Republic
Level of religious tolerance in Azerbaijan is much higher than in France - ISESCO ex-director
Kazakhstan's exports to Switzerland decrease year-on-year
Azerbaijani medical insurance agency signs contract with tender-winning IT company
Resolution adopted by French Senate must be canceled – Azerbaijani NGO head
Volume of Turkish textile clothing supplies to Kazakh market surges
Latvian AirBaltic cancels Riga-Tbilisi-Riga flights
Reconnaissance work completed within Baiterek space complex creation in Kazakhstan
Thermal power plant modernization, other projects underway in Kazakhstan's Karaganda
Georgia imposes further restrictions to curb spread of coronavirus
Georgian carrier to launch regular cargo flights from China to Europe
Russia's Rostelecom expects to develop transit routes through Turkmenistan
Average monthly salary in Azerbaijan's Nakhchivan rises
Azerbaijani, Afghan FMs discuss latest situation in region
WB, AIIB to fund rural infrastructure development in Uzbekistan
Azerbaijani, Indonesian FMs stress importance of trilateral ceasefire statement
Austria fully supports Uzbekistan obtaining of EU’s GSP beneficiary status
Turkmenistan's Dashoguz region opens tender for installation work
France not part of Karabakh settlement, but part of problem - Turkish defense minister
Japanese companies to provide technical support for terry production in Uzbekistan
Germany's hotspot district to launch COVID-19 mass tests for children
Yield of citrus fruits in Azerbaijan up
Capital of Kazakh companies operating in Turkey revealed
Iran boosts its pistachio exports
World Economic Forum announces Azerbaijan's road quality score
Share of assets in Azerbaijani banking sector declines
Kazakhstan eyeing amending legislation to support renewable energy dev't
Georgian Hualing Free Industrial Zone plans to finalize deal with 4 new companies
Mortgage lending in Azerbaijan through state line grows manifold
Kazakhstan to launch hundreds of industrial projects before year-end
Azerbaijani ICT company wins tender on purchase of licenses
Central Bank of Azerbaijan discloses data from foreign exchange auction
Employment in Iran's West Azerbaijan Province increases
Buta Airways to Increase the Frequency of Flights Performed to Izmir
Azerbaijan, Hungary discuss possibilities of attracting investors to liberated territories
Georgian Huliang FIZ offering available land plots to potential investors
Azerbaijani NBCO talks about its activities amid coronavirus
Azerbaijan’s carpet producer signs tender contract
Many members of French Senate unaware war in Karabakh ended (VIDEO)
Number of people infected with coronavirus pandemic in Iran exceeds 900,000
Baku Stock Exchange admits local investment company
Uzbekistan eyes to set up local production of various vaccines
France does not deserve Azerbaijan’s confidence – senator
Bahar Azadi gold coin price still falling in Iran
Bank mortgages in Azerbaijan rise
Full text of Azerbaijani parliament’s statement against French Senate’s resolution
Iran's economy remains strong and steady – Iran's president
Turkmenistan to be vital strategic partner, gas supplier to China long-term - Wood Mackenzie
EDB talks Kazakhstan's economy growth forecast, return to pre-COVID levels
Ambassadors of Turkey, Iran to Azerbaijan hold discusses on Karabakh
“I am quite sure that giving a hand to customers in this challenging time will pay off in the future”: interview with Dariusz Kacprzyk, Member of Supervisory Board of AccessBank Azerbaijan
Import of Turkish ready-made clothes by Iran down
Water resources of Azerbaijan’s Kalbajar district to be re-explored
Turkey's export of ready-made clothes to Uzbekistan down
Money supply in Azerbaijan grows - CBA
Lending to banking sector in Azerbaijan up
Turkmenistan raises 10M2020 imports of Turkish ready-made clothes
Uzbek gas chemical company opens tender for insurance services
Precious metal prices in Azerbaijan up
All news