Georgia's Foreign Minister Salome Zurabishvili visited Strasbourg the other day, explaining the gist of Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili's recent critical statements with regard to top Council of Europe officials and Walter Schwimmer himself.
Talking to RIA Novosti, the CE Secretary General noted that he had learned about the Georgian leader's statements from the press alone. In his words, such reports are not based on facts.
According to Mr. Schwimmer, the Georgian Foreign Minister said in Strasbourg that Mikhail Saakashvili didn't make any sharp-worded statements whatsoever.
The CE aims to facilitate respect for human rights in Georgia and Adzharia alike, Mr. Schwimmer went on to say. I talked to Adzharian representatives, also informing the Georgian side about my conversations, Schwimmer added. The Council of Europe is interested in the peaceful settlement of the Georgian-Adzharian conflict, and not vice versa, Walter Schwimmer stressed.
President Mikhail Saakashvili of Georgia said last week that Georgian authorities were moving to expel CE envoy Plamen Nikolov from Georgia. Mr. Nikolov was accused by Georgian authorities of providing distorted information about the Tbilisi-Batumi conflict to Strasbourg.
Walter Schwimmer is voicing an incomprehensible position on Adzharia, Mikhail Saakashvili noted. The President of Georgia also said that Mr. Schwimmer's attempt to show that both sides should allegedly be blamed for the current situation was something inappropriate and unjustified. Mr. Schwimmer turned a blind eye on Abashidze's lawlessness, Mikhail Saakashvili noted.