The Russian and Georgian governments can do many things to solve the problems in their bilateral relations, Zurab Zhvaniya, Georgia's prime minister, said at a meeting with Prime Minister Mikhail Fradkov on Tuesday.
Mr. Zhvaniya noted that Russia and Georgia now trust each other more.
"An opportunity to form new and closer relations on new conditions has arisen," he said. According to him, it is currently an important moment in the development of the Russian-Georgian relations.
Mr. Zhvaniya said that the situation in Georgia was rather optimistic. "We went through difficult days during the confrontation with Aslan Abashidze, and the problem was solved, in many respects, because of the efforts of the Adzharian people," he said.
Mr. Fradkov stressed that the Russian-Georgian negotiations in Moscow were occurring within the framework of understandings reached by the two countries' presidents and against the background of their permanent contacts.
Yesterday, Mr. Zhvaniya met with Gennady Fadeyev, the president of Russian Railways, to discuss the unification of the Caucasian railroads. Mr. Fadeyev noted that this was the key to solving many of the region's political and economic problems.
Moscow praised the third Georgian-Abkhazian meeting which was held on Thursday, May 20 in Sukhumi (Abkhazia is a self-proclaimed republic in Georgia). A special representative of the UN secretary general, Heidi Tagliavini, chaired the session. Ms. Tagliavini supported solving the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict through negotiations. The meeting was devoted to security guarantees.
The Georgian government believes that the Adzharian conflict was in many respects settled through Russia's mediation, including President Putin's efforts.
The Abkhazian parliament circulated a statement on May 24 in connection with the situation in Adzharia. "The events in Adzharia gave the Georgian authorities the illusion that a simple settlement to the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict was possible, just like the 'rose revolution' in Georgia," the document said.
"But they should not forget that Adzharians constitute an ethnographic group of Georgians and that Adzharia is a part of Georgia, while the Abkhazians are an independent people and Abkhazia is a sovereign state," the document said.
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