The UN intends to resume monitoring in the Kodori Gorge in July. The UN withdrew its military observers from the gorge, which is a conflict zone between Georgia and Abkhazia, after some were kidnapped on July 5. According to Heidi Tagliavini, the UN's permanent representative in Georgia, monitoring methods will be changed.
The UN is playing an active role in implementing an agreement between presidents Putin and Shevardnadze that was reached during their meeting in Sochi. The agreement aims to reach a peaceful solution to the Georgian-Abkhazian conflict. The UN has drawn up a plan for returning refugees to Abkhazia that is based on three key points: redefining the refugees' status, guaranteeing their safe return, and creating a civilian police force. The police force will train representatives of law-enforcement agencies and local authorities to work with returning refugees and maintain peace and stability. The proposals are due to be discussed at a meeting in Geneva in July.
Tagliavini said that the UN was working towards a political solution because this was the only way of securing long-term peace. The preconditions for achieving peace already exist: the situation regarding a solution to the conflict looks much more positive than a year ago. However, Tagliavini added that Georgia and Abkhazia need to understand that they hold the key to peace themselves.