Abdulla Shahid, the President of the United Nations 76th session of the General Assembly and Foreign Minister of the Maldives, met with President Salome Zurabishvili and Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili on July 25 as part of his first official visit to Georgia.
During the meeting with President Zurabishvili, President Shahid commented on Georgia’s priorities at the UN including peace and security, sustainable development, and tourism. He commended Georgia for its commitment to multilateralism and female empowerment.
President Zurabishvili also expressed concern over talks of a deal between occupied Abkhazia and Russia for the former to transfer 186 hectares of land in the Soviet-era town of Bichvinta to the latter in a move that she dubbed a “form of annexation.”
While meeting with PM Garibashvili the pair considered cooperation between Georgia and the UN within the UN General Assembly with a focus on key issues facing the country. Along that line, the PM and President Shahid discussed the situation in Georgia’s occupied regions of Tskhinvali/South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
Meetings with Foreign Minister, Parliament Speaker
President Shahid started his visit by meeting with Foreign Minister Ilia Darchiashvili on July 25, where common issues of cooperation in the areas of human rights and gender equality, among others, were addressed.
Following the meeting at the Foreign Ministry, President Shahid sat down with the Speaker of the Georgian Parliament, Shalva Papuashvili, who “expressed Georgia’s support for the priorities set during [Shahid’s] Presidency.”
In light of recent global challenges, they stressed the “importance of multilateral diplomacy, rules-based international order, and support for the more active participation of women in politics.”
During his visit, President Shahid also visited a camp of internally displaced persons in Tserovani, near Tbilisi, and the occupation line with the Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia alongside the EU Monitoring Mission.
Note: This article was updated on July 26 at 14:30 to reflect meetings with the Georgian PM and President.