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Incident prevention meetings to be resumed in Gali

By Tatia Megeneishvili
Friday, March 25
The Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) meeting will be resumed in Gali. An agreement between Sokhumi and Tbilisi was reached at the Geneva International Talks; the information was spread on the official Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) web page.

This was the 35th round of the Geneva talks which have been held since the 2008 August Georgia-Russia war.

"I commend the political will displayed by all participants to keep up the constructive spirit at the Geneva International Discussions. Today's joint decision to resume the Gali IPRM is a major step to increase confidence, predictability and transparency. The IPRM will help to solve pressing humanitarian issues and to make daily life easier for the affected population. I call on the participants to hold a first IPRM meeting at the earliest possible convenience,” stated a representative of the OSCE Chairmanship, Gernot Erler.

The Foreign Ministry of Georgia spread a statement in which they said that an agreement has been reached as a result of long consultations and hard efforts.

“After a four year break, we finally resumed the process. This agreement is a big step towards security on the ground and will also contribute to the protection of fundamental rights of local population,” reads the statement of the Foreign Ministry.

The de-facto Minister of Foreign Affairs of Abkhazia, Viacheslav Chirikba evaluated the agreement positively.

“This is an undoubtedly positive result of negotiations between the Abkhaz and Georgian sides,” stated Chirikba.

Russia's Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin, Russia's chief negotiator in the Geneva talks, also dubbed the agreement as an extremely significant event.

The delegation of the United States of America also welcomed the agreement.

IPRM meetings were stopped in April 2012 after Georgia’s breakaway region of Abkhazia declared the former head of the European Union's Monitoring Mission in Georgia, Andrzej Tyszkiewicz as "persona non grata”.

The 36th round of Geneva talks will be held on June 14-15.