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US Congress Condemns Occupation of Georgian Lands in Its Bill

By Gvantsa Gabekhadze
Monday, March 26
The US House of Representatives has approved a $1.3 trillion dollar spending bill, which has condemned the occupation of Georgia's historic lands by Russia, and prohibited financing of the governments recognizing the independence of Russian-occupied regions of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali.

The 2018 Spending Bill also increased the US assistance for Georgia to 105,325,000 USD.

The bill has already been signed by US President Donald Trump.

The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia has reported that the passage supporting Georgia is titled “Occupation of the Georgian Territories of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia” and comes under the Chapter of Russian Aggression.

The Act cuts financial assistance for any nations which have recognized or established diplomatic ties with the Georgian occupied territories, referring to Russia, Venezuela, Nicaragua and Nauru, which have recognized the regions as independent states after the Russia-Georgia 2008 war.

The document reads that the US Secretary of the Treasury shall instruct the United States executive directors of international financial institutions to vote against any assistance for any of their programs (including any loan, credit, or guarantee) that violates the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia.

The Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili has released a special statement over the US decision.

“It is a clear confirmation of the support of Georgia's sovereignty and territorial integrity by both the US Congress and Administration, and of commitment to deepen the two countries' strategic partnership and further intensifying their cooperation.

“I would like to thank the US Congress and the Administration of President Donald Trump for yet another demonstration of firm support at a legislative level,” Kvirikashvili stated.

Vice-Premier and Minister of Foreign Affairs of Georgia Mikheil Janelidze assessed the support for Georgia in the US spending bill as an important step towards deepening the Georgian-US strategic partnership.

Janelidze stated that the passage in the bill represents a legal assessment of Russia's aggressive actions in Georgia and is important for Georgia's non-recognition policy of the occupied territories.