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Compiled by Keti Baramidze
Wednesday, April 28
Mikheil Machavariani: the present Government can talk to Russia

Kviris Palitra reports that despite opposition scepticism the Government group still says that genuine elections will be held on May 30. They link this with holding a dialogue with Russia on appropriate terms.

Mikheil Machavariani states: "We are planning to fulfil the first and the most important requirement for holding conversations with Russia – abiding by the Medvedev-Sarkozy agreement, withdrawing our troops and returning detainees. Russia wants to convince the world that it wants to begin conversations with Georgia but not with our present Government. Everyone knows that Georgian politicians who visit Russia lend a helping hand to it by improving their complicated situation.

"If the opposition is going to come to power by making all kind of concessions to Russia we can be completely sure that it will never achieve this aim. Our present Government can have a perfect relationship with Russia if the latter fulfils all its requirements and makes compromises. But Russia has drawn up a plan to punish us and it is achieving its ends step by step.

"There are still some opposition parties who have a commonsense attitude towards relationships with Russia. They have not come out with the formula “Everybody without Noghaideli” due to the fact that he is a former Prime Minister. The following attitude appeared after the meetings with Putin: The Parliamentary opposition expressed an avid pro-Georgian position and some of the non-Parliamentary opposition did too, and the Alasania-Noghaideli consolidation pact drawn up by Gachechiladze was spoiled by this.

"So I must state that I really don’t have a sceptical attitude towards the opposition. The most important goal of our Government is to hold transparent, fair and worthy elections not to give people any grounds to doubt that democracy rules in Georgia,” concludes Machavariani.

Mamuka Areshidze: We’d better preserve those territories we already have

Analyst Mamuka Areshidze says in an interview with Akhali Taoba: "Nowadays in Georgia the Western Special Services aren't able to work as Western political ideas don't exist here any more. Westerners have said themselves that they can’t do anything in Georgia now as everything has fallen into Russia’s hands. In addition to this our Western colleagues are advising us to defend the territory we still have and stop vain talk about restoring our territorial integrity.

"Russia controls everything in our country, manipulates our politicians and acts according to its will. In the present situation we might see any sort of disaster as a tremendous dark cloud has gathered not only in our country’s sky but over the whole South Caucasus, and if Georgia becomes its victim the whole Caucasus will fall too," says Areshidze.

"This is why I don’t rule out that the forthcoming elections may create an unhealthy situation in the country. Everything depends on the President though, he really can prevent the straining of the situation in Georgia.

"Let’s imagine what will happen if people who are not satisfied with the election results hold demonstrations in the streets and the Government, to suppress these rallies, opens fire and kills at least five of those demonstrators. What will follow all this we all know perfectly well. That’s why I emphasise that the Government still has time to hold transparent elections and give people grounds to think that they will be absolutely fair," adds Areshidze.