UPDATE: EUSR Toivo Klaar Visits Tbilisi

On February 14, Toivo Klaar, the European Union Special Representative for the South Caucasus and the Crisis in Georgia, and the Co-Chair to the Geneva International Discussions (GDI) in the frames of his visit to Georgia, met with Grigol Liluashvili, the Head of the State Security Service of Georgia, Nikoloz Samkharadze, the Chairperson of the Foreign Affairs Committee of the Georgian Parliament. On February 15, Toivo Klaar, the EU Special Representative also met with Tea Akhvlediani, the State Minister for Reconciliation and Civil Equality. The discussions evolved, among other issues, around the situation in the occupied territories of Georgia, EU’s “special role” in peaceful conflict resolution and the importance of EUMM’s unrestricted access to the occupied Abkhazia and Tskhinvali region.

The conversation between the SSSG Head and the EU Special Representative touched upon the situation in Georgia’s occupied territories and along the occupation line, as well as the illegal “borderization” process. According to the SSSG, the parties also discussed “the very difficult challenges” in the region, and their implications.

“Special attention was paid to the issue of the unconditional release of Georgian citizens who are illegally imprisoned in the occupied territories,” the SSSG said.

Among other things, the parties noted the European Union Monitoring Mission’s (EUMM) “special role” in ensuring stability along the occupation line. “Attention was drawn to the immediate need for the Mission’s unrestricted access to the occupied territories, according to its mandate,” the SSSG added.

As for the meeting between the Foreign Affairs Committee Chair and the EU Special Representative, the parties emphasized Georgia’s “important role” in mediation between Armenia and Azerbaijan, the Parliament said.

In addition to that, the sides discussed “difficult situation in occupied territories and Russia’s illegal actions, including recent developments in Sokhumi and the decision of the de-facto authorities not to allow the EU Special Representative in Abkhazia.”

The sides also “briefly reviewed” the domestic political situation in Georgia and discussed what effect the pre-election period may have on the occupied territories.

On February 15, State Minister Akhvlediani, in her meeting with EU Representative Klaar, stressed the importance of the EU’s “special role” and engagement in the peaceful resolution of the conflict, including “by promoting confidence-building between the artificially divided societies”.

At the meeting, the parties also discussed the humanitarian and human rights situation in the occupied territories. “Special attention was paid to the process of implementation of reconciliation and engagement policies and future visions in this regard, based on human-centered, status-neutral and needs-based approaches of the conflict-affected populations,” the Office of State Minister of Georgia for Reconciliation and Civic Equity reported.

This article was updated on 15/02/2024 at 12:55 to reflect the EU Special Representative’s meeting with the State Minister.

This article may be updated…

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