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Dagestan road construction not on the agenda

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Tuesday, October 21
Georgia's Minister of Economy and Sustainable Development Giorgi Kvirikashvili said that the construction of the Dagestan road is not on the agenda.

“There are two main aspects in this case: security and economic benefits. Both must be analyzed by professionals and we must realize what the risks will be or the positives we can receive from the construction of the road. However, we must think twice before giving any permission away,” stated Kvirikashvili.

According to the Russian media, the restoration of the roads at the Dagestani section of the Russian border with Georgia began on July 2, 2014. This road was closed in 1992.

According to the press service of the Dagestani Motorway Department Andrei Bondarev, the length of the Avaro-Kakheti motorway will be 83 km, and the route should overpass three mountains for which 25 bridges and 5 tunnels will be required.

The opposition in Georgia strongly opposes the approach, stating that re-opening the road will put Georgia’s national security at risk.

Expert Tornike Sharashenidze stated that any new road to Russia is a threat to Georgia, because it will ease any offensive against the country.

“Anything that contributes to the movement of Russian troops is a threat to Georgia, that’s why we should pay attention to such facts,” stated Sharashenidze.

According to fellow expert Demur Giorkhelidze, there is no deterrent factor that will prevent Russia from entering Georgia.

“20% of Georgian territory is occupied. That’s why construction of the new road will not change the threat of Russian intervention. When it comes to economic benefits, the road will not play any crucial role for Georgia’s economy either. Any initiative from Russia must be discussed from a political point of view,” stated Giorkhelidze.