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President not attending EU Association signing

By Tea Mariamidze
Monday, June 23
The President of Georgia will not be part of the delegation that will sign the Association Agreement with the EU. A statement over the issue was made by Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze, who stated that the delegation will be chaired by Prime Minister Irakli Gharibashvili. There will be four ministers in the delegation: the minister of defense, minister of economy, minister on European and Euro-Atlantic Integration and the minister of justice.

UNM members claim that the fact is one of the signs of confrontation between the president and the government. The Georgian Dream denies these claims.

The president himself responded to questions on June 20 for the TV show Reaktsia, denying any rivalry between him and the Prime Minister.

Margvelashvili explained that currently Georgia is facing various changes owing to the amendments in the constitution.

“Constitutional and political changes and many other related issues are still not completed, so it is natural that there are no answers to some questions,” Margvelashvili said.

The president stressed that when he refused to sign the Association Agreement and delegated the right to the government, he was not interested in further details concerning the issue.

“We are signing the most important agreement, which opens up new opportunities for our country. Our starting point is the only thing - the state's interest, which must be the most important for each politician. The state's interest lies in the fact of signing the agreement and who will sign it is secondary,” stated the President.

Margvelashvili stated that through the step he avoided any kind of tension in the state administration as well.

“I'm focused on the future. If I go deep into details today, it will be impossible to see the future developments for the country,” Margvelashvili admitted.

On the question on how he and the founder of the Georgian Dream Bidzina Ivanishvili fascinated each other at the very beginning, Margvelashvili responded that the ex-Premier made excellent strategic planning in the country by mobilizing and involving people and activating the media,” Margvealshvili stated, stressing that he would stay in the coalition as long as he and the coalition share the same values.

“These values are democracy, free trade relations, West-oriented foreign policy, regulating relations with Russia without tension and hysteria,” Margvealshvili underscored.