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Russia Blames Georgia in Disruption of Ergneti 89th IPRM Meeting

By Tea Mariamidze
Thursday, September 20
Moscow accuses Georgia in disruption of 89th Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) meeting held in Ergneti on September 14.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Maria Zakharova stated on September 19 that Russia is concerned about the disruption of IPRM meeting in Ergneti, adding it was caused by “Tbilisi's attempts to politicize the mechanism.”

According to her, the reason for the disruption of the meeting was the fact that "Tbilisi put certain politicized issues unacceptable for Tskhinvali on the agenda".

“The confrontational actions of the Georgian side caused the disruption of a similar mechanism on the Georgian-Abkhazian border. Tbilisi’s policy aimed at politicizing the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism meetings may block this useful format,” Zakharova added.

She added that de facto Tskhinvali does not refuse to participate in the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism meetings in the future.

“We call on the co-chairmen of the Geneva Talks to promote the proper work of the mechanism," Zakharova said.

Georgia’s State Security service reports that the representatives of the de-facto government of Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia protested and disrupted the 89th IPRM meeting in Ergneti as they demanded a removal of issues related to the murder of Georgian citizens Archil Tatunashvili and David Basharuli from the agenda.

“The mentioned issues on the agenda and ultimatums within the IPRM format are categorically unacceptable for the Central Government of Georgia, due to the fact that demands are contrary to the fundamental principles of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism,” the SSS stated last week.

The European Union Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM) also expressed their regret that it was impossible to discuss the agenda items. They explain that following the opening remarks, different views were expressed concerning the provisional agenda and participants were unable to continue discussions.

The Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism was created in February 2009 as a result of the Geneva discussions that followed the 2008 conflict in Georgia. The meetings are an opportunity to identify potential risks and problems of the local community, exchange information, etc.