Moscow tries to undermine and “weaken” the EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM) with the hand of its “puppets” in Sokhumi, Giga Bokeria, secretary of Georgia’s National Security Council (NSC), said on April 26.
“They will fail to do that,” he told journalists. “Such an aggressive and outrageous attempt by Russia and its puppets [in Sokhumi] is a source of concern.”
Authorities in breakaway Abkhazia accused on April 25 head of the EUMM, Andrzej Tyszkiewicz, of “disrespect” towards Sokhumi and declared him as “an undesirable person on the territory of Abkhazia”. A day earlier a meeting of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) in Gali did not took place after the Abkhaz side refused to participate in it in protest against the head of EUMM. Sokhumi wants EUMM to be represented at the IPRM meetings by other representatives instead of the mission head.
“EUMM is one of the key tools for stability and peace and those, who want to have peace they also want EUMM to operate unhindered,” Bokeria said.
The Georgian Foreign Ministry said in a statement on April 26, that “the recent demarche against the EUMM is just one component in the chain of actions aimed at diminishing the role of the international organizations acting in Georgia.”
“These and other demarches against EUMM clearly demonstrate that the Russian side is uncomfortable with a neutral and impartial international presence on the territory of Georgia,” it said. “Georgian side calls on Moscow to ensure that the work of the IPRMs and the Geneva International Discussions proceeds in an unhindered way and that the objections regarding the role of the EUMM in the IPRMs and the Geneva International Discussions are promptly removed.”
In his remarks on April 26, Secretary of Georgia’s National Security Council also touched upon the part of the Abkhaz de facto authorities’ statement, which expresses protest over, as it puts it, EUMM’s refusal to paying “due attention” to allegations voiced by Georgian opposition politician Irakli Alasania about paramilitary groups.
“Irresponsible and stupid allegations made by some of our politicians gave pretext… to such aggressive campaign against the institution [EUMM], which is so important for our country,” Bokeria said.