Another meeting within the frames of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM)

Mon, 13/12/2010 - 13:20

Another meeting within the frames of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) was held in the border village of Ergenti (Georgia).
As the Head of the South Ossetian Delegation Merab Chigoev reported to IA RES, representatives of South Ossetia, Georgia, Russia, OSCE and the EU Monitoring Mission (ECMM) in Georgia participated in the meeting.
"The meeting discussed the work of the Border-Guard Service of South Ossetia on defining the borderline. Participants of the meeting touched upon the incident, which occurred on November 25 near the village of Ditsi (Georgia). At a time when our official services were carrying out works on defining the state borderline in the vicinity of the village of Ered (Tskhinval district of South Ossetia) and Ditsi (Gori district of Georgia), a group of civilians of Georgian nationality came close to the boundary line and tried to prevent this work.

As I was informed, only the intervention of local Georgian authorities helped defuse the situation, and these persons have returned to their village ", said Chigoev.
In order to prevent similar incidents in the future, the South Ossetian side, according to Chigoev, stated that work on determining the state border would continue, and warned the Georgian side and the EUMM from such incidents".
Chigoev reported that at the meeting, the same question in a somewhat different interpretation has been raised by the Georgian side.
"They said that while conducting these works South Ossetia had violated the state border and tried to move the boundary line 50 meters deep into Georgia. They presented no real proofs. We explained that we were acting in accordance with the decree of the Council of People's Commissars of Georgia of 1922, which set forth the line of the administrative boundaries of the former South Ossetian Autonomous Oblast and we did not cross this line", stressed Chigoev.
He recalled that the work on determination the state border, 40% completed, is neither a delimitation nor a demarcation of the border, since such actions shall be conducted within a bilaterally agreed format.
"This is our unilateral format and we want to determine the boundary line, i.e. we are conducting a preparatory work. Both we and Russia have addressed the proposal on delimitation and demarcation of the border to the Georgian side, although Tbilisi, unlike Russia, did not agree on this step", said Chigoev.
At the same time, he said, occasionally there are violations of the state border and they were not always intentional.
"Mostly, it happened because of unawareness on where the the borderline is. Even the EU observers had four times violated the state border of South Ossetia in one and half month. So, what one can say about ordinary citizens on both sides of the border. Therefore, the determination and fixing of the boundary line is first and foremost in the interest of ordinary citizens of neighboring countries", stressed Chigoev.
According to him, in Ergneti, the South Ossetian delegation has once again raised the question about its citizens abducted by Georgian security forces, and whom Georgia considers missing.
"We know that at least five out of the seven missing South Ossetian citizens were in the hands of the official structures of Georgia. In response to enquiry for any new information on their fate, the Georgian side and the EUMM stated that such information was unavailable", said Chigoev.
The meeting had also focused on several other issues, including law enforcement activities in the border areas of South Ossetia and Georgia, as well as the format of the next IPRM meetings.
"In general, we are satisfied with the results of the meeting," stated Chigoev.
The next meeting is scheduled for January 21, 2011.
It is worth reminding that the agreement to launch IPRM was reached during the fourth round of the Geneva discussions on security in South Caucasus in February 2009.

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