Agency Caucasus: EU Envoy Meets With Senior Abkhazian Officials

From: MSN NicknameEagle_wng  (Original Message)    Sent: 5/31/2008 4:57 AM
EU envoy meets with senior Abkhazian officials     
Sergei Bagapsh, President of Abkhazia

Sukhum/Agency Caucasus – As Abkhazia calls more attention than ever to itself from the West through its efforts to follow in the footsteps of Kosovo in earning international recognition, an envoy of European Union (EU) began on Friday a trip to Sukhum, capital of Abkhazia.

Before an envoy of ambassadors from 15 EU countries made their way through Sukhum, Abkhazia’s President Sergei Bagapsh issued a statement of gratefulness for care by foreign countries to know about the stance of Abkhazia from the Abkhazian officials, and added that Sukhum would remain steadfast in its policies on independence. The EU would not be able to persuade Abkhazia to appreciate the territorial totality of and to become part of it again, said Bagapsh.  

“All diplomats, envoys and journalists who happen to come to Abkhazia are looking for a way to have inside information about the attitude of Abkhazia towards negotiations between Georgia and Abkhazia. People do know about our attitude and we will not deviate from it,” said Bagapsh. “We will try to convey to the EU envoy information about what the administration of Abkhazia regards as the right thing to do, about whom it will establish relations with, about how it will continue to exist, and about what it will demand to happen. We are resolutely determined to found an independent state and nothing can force us to give up this idea of ours.”

The administration of Abkhazia would try to convey to the EU envoy the message that Abkhazia does not pursue an aggressive line of policies and it will be willing to negotiate with if the Georgian administration fulfils the requisites of the Moscow Armistice, said the president. “In order for the negotiations to resume, must withdraw its troops from Upper Kodor and sign a peace accord as a promise not to resort to military force again,” he added.
When asked to comment on ’s pursuance of NATO membership, Bagapsh said that it was entirely left up to to decide whom to align with; “however,” he added, “it is left to us to decide how we will exist and what kind of military, economic and political existence we will adopt.”
In his address on May 12 to reporters, President Mikheil Saakashvili of called the EU on to have an on-the-spot observation of what had recently been doing in Abkhazia.
Negotiations between Georgia and Abkhazia broke off in July 2006 when located some of its troops in Upper Kodor.

Abkhazia will host on June 6 Javier Solana, High Representative for the Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the Secretary-General of both the Council of the European Union (EU). ÖZ/FT

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