Conflict between political groups and problem of Russian military base in Akhalkalaki, Samtskhe-Javakheti region, has become a burning issue recently because of the disagreement between Akhalkalaki majorette deputy Melik Raisin and the President’s attorney in Samtskhe-Javakheti. The Dilis Gazeti spoke to majorette deputy Melik Raisin regarding the problem.
According to Raisin, it is clear that the conflict between the government and the city council grew into political crisis in Akhalkalaki. Akhalkalaki Council members visited Tbilisi several weeks ago in order to meet the President and discuss the problem. the Council sent a massage to Badri Khatidze, head of the President’s Regional Office, four months ago asking him to assist the council in settling problems in the region. The appeal was not responded. The City Council members were left without any attention again after making another apply couple weeks ago.
Akhalkalaki majorette deputy Melik Raisin states that problems in the region have occurred since Gigla Baramidze, President’s attorney in the region, announced that he is not a member of “the Citizens’ Union” (the ruling party). According to Raisin, Gigla Baramidze criticizes the ruling party as much as he can because he does not want to let power and leave the position he presently takes.
According to Raisin, Baramidze even objects that Russian military bases withdraw from Akhalkalaki. “It was an act of provocation when local population of Akhalkalaki arranged a meeting demanding that Russian military bases stay there. The Akhalkalaki governor had also supported the attorney (Gigla Baramidze) in organizing it”, Raisin states.
As to the position of Melik Raisin concerning the issue of Russian military base he says that large part of local population work for the base and get money for living. That is why “it would be better if the government created better social conditions and established more working places in the region otherwise there is no guarantee that social explosion will not occur in the region when Russian troops are withdrawn from Akhalkalaki. At the same time Raisin presumes that the Russian military base is a guarantee for security in the region because Georgia is not able to defend the border with its own forces (Samkskhe-Javakheti borders Turkey and Armenia). The fact is that Georgia has quite tense relations with Russia, which cannot be said concerning Turkey and Armenia. That is why it seems surprising when the majorette deputy states that Russian troops are guarantee for security of Georgian citizens in the region.
The Dilis Gazeti