Boris Chochiev: "We have no intentions to isolate ourselves from the world community"

Tue, 03/03/2009 - 11:50

We understand that it is not to the advantage of both Georgia and world community when South Ossetia informs everyone about the situation which we currently face owing to Georgian aggression, stated Post-conflict plenipotentiary Boris Chochiev commenting on 17-18 February round of Geneva discussions.
According to Chochiev, the discussions were mainly in the working group on security issues: "At the previous meetings, we have elaborated a draft proposal on mechanisms for prevention of and reaction to possible incidents. We did not then agree on them and hence about this all interested parties. Now, the co-chairmen decided to hold meetings without reports, and thus, start directly with discussion of the mechanisms. We refused to do so, for we did understand that it was not to the advantage of both Georgia and world community when South Ossetia more often informs about the situation which we have toady owing to Georgian aggression. We have prepared our report and everyone had to listen to it", said Chochiev.
"In general, the organizers planned to devote these meetings to discussion of refugee issue and humanitarian assistance. We have focused on the urgent necessity to settle issues related to security guarantees. If Saakashvili had given written guarantees of security in relation to Abkhazia, this had not been done in relation to South Ossetia. We have based our position on the necessity to obtain guarantees of non-use of force", stressed Chochiev.
"We had also informed on the situation in Leningori district. All things taking place there once again prove that the Georgian side initially planned that whole Gerogian population would leave the territory of South Ossetia. It never happened before that new houses for refugees are built in this short period of time. It is more often that they are provided with temporary housing. But the Georgians would like to present it in the light that Russia is to be blamed for everything and the Georgian population had to leave their houses. That is why, the houses are being built at the border with South Ossetia. 2, 055 families got houses on the territory of Georgia adjacent to borders with South Ossetia. Houses were provided to people who were not evicted and not affected by war, contrary to 260 families evicted by Georgians from Leningori district in 90s. Today, a situation is created to make the Georgia population flee," stressed Chochiev adding that "in this regard, we have invited the co-chairmen to once again visit South Ossetia to be able to see the situation in Leningori district and find out the reasons for this behavior of the Georgian side and why the world community connives at this".
"We have also raised the issue of constant shooting at Ossetian villages from the Georgian side. We have informed that Ossetian population is being evicted from Georgia and European monitors remain idle".
"I have had meetings with the Head of EUMM Hansjorg Haber and put the question why and on which grounds the EUMM had signed the Memorandum of Understanding with the Georgian Defense Ministry on 26 January which stipulates that Georgia has the right to deploy one battalion, armored equipment up to 120 mm caliber and 5 artillery systems in 15 km distance from South Ossetia. We did not get any clear response to our questions," her added.
According to him, the issues related to delivery of humanitarian assistance caused hot discussion.
"Out position remains unchanged – we will accept assistance only through Russia. Today, the Americans and the UN are not searching for ways to deliver the aid, but for ways to connect this issue with politics. Nonetheless, we have no intentions to isolate ourselves from the world community. "
As to the activities of the OSCE on the territory of South Ossetia, Boris Chochiev said that "we are ready to work with them directly, if the OSCE is ready to report to RSO MFA, if we will be deciding on the appointment of the Head of Mission and if we can control all reporting. If they want to work here, they will do so under our conditions. This refers to any other international organization", said Chochiev.
According to Chochiev, as to "the problem of gas supply to Georgia we have voiced our position – we pay to Georgia for transit of Russian gas while potable and irrigation water to Goergia is provided free of charge. We have stated that with the help of mediators we would be negotiating water supply to Georgia."

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