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PM remarks on Eurasian Union stir criticism

By Messenger Staff
Monday, September 9
At his recent press-conference Georgia’s Prime Minister expressed a pragmatic attitude towards the Eurasian Union. He mentioned that every proposal needs to be studied well and if eventually it would be beneficial for the country, then the proposal might be accepted.

This approach based on common sense was understood rationally by the population. Whereas the opposition National Movement and other forces who claim to be Western oriented severely criticized the PM’s position, stressing that it creates a serious threat to the country’s interests.

The PM’s critics mentioned that some days ago, Armenia officially refused to join Eastern partnership program, suggested by the EU. Instead, Yerevan signed an agreement on joining the Russian-sponsored Eurasian Union and thus integrate into the old Soviet Union system. The PM’s critics believe that Ivanishvili is moving down the same path.

From time to time, Georgian Dream representatives and its leaders provide some kind of remarks, which later need some kind of explanations and correction. This time as well, Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze had to provide an explanation for Ivanishvili’s statement. Panjikidze highlighted Georgia’s principled stand on European and Euro-Atlantic integration and this had been declared many times by the current leadership. She also mentioned that trade and the economy are global notions and that Georgia has to observe thoroughly the situation in the EU and the Eurasian Union and might find some common topics there.

Some Georgia analysts suggest that this is a risky game. As Armenia’s example showed, Georgia has to make one particular decision. Armenia is a state that claimed that it would balance between the EU and Russia, with the incentive to benefit from both. However, this position proved to be wrong and finally Yerevan had to make its choice: the EU or Russia? It chose Russia.

Indeed, every country should find its way to success. However, Georgia for more than a decade has been declaring its commitment to EU and Euro-Atlantic integration. As critics of the PM’s position highlight, Ivanishvili has aired the “Russian dream.” Many analysts say that such sensitive topics should be touched more carefully.