The George Bush administration is deeply concerned over the actions of Adzharian leader Aslan Abashidze and has been in active negotiations with the Georgian and Adzharian sides in the past few days through diplomatic channels.
Official spokesman for the US Department of State Richard Boucher said this to reporters in Washington on Monday.
The recent steps of Mr. Abashidze and his government arouse concerns that he might be trying to provoke a military conflict with the democratically elected new leadership of Georgia, said Mr. Boucher.
We are calling upon Adzharian leader Aslan Abashidze to disarm the armed formations in Adzharia, said the spokesman noting that Washington was closely following the developments in and around Adzharia.
We are deeply concerned over Mr. Abashidze's decision to blow up two bridges linking Adzharia with other parts of Georgia. These actions are disrupting international transport communication between Georgia and Azerbaijan and Europe, which also provide vitally important links between Adzharia and the rest of Georgia, said Mr. Boucher. Mr. Abashidze's actions make us question his loyalty to the Adzharian people, he added.
We hail Mr. Saakashvili's statement that Georgia will not use force, and we are continuing to urge the Georgian government to use political and economic instruments for restoring law in Adzharia, said the spokesman for the US Department of State.
Having stated that Adzharia is part of Georgia, Mr. Boucher said that official Washington supported the efforts of the Georgian government to restore the supremacy of law in Adzharia.