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Does Georgia’s opposition want to avoid associating with Moscow?2008-11-27 09:28
According to Mikheil Nikolaevich Saakashvili's latest theory, the Georgian people have two enemies - poverty and Russia. This is almost the only principle which does not provoke any disagreement between the regime and the country's opposition. At the slightest mention of dialogue with Moscow, most of the opposition recoil like the devil around holy water.
Last week the former member of Georgia's parliament Levan Pirveli, who until now had not given any reason to doubt him as the representative of the opposition's coordinating council in Europe, visited the Russian capital. What for?
Initially, the Georgian agency GHN reported that it was to take part in the "War of civilizations" conference organized by Rossiiskaya Gazeta. But then it quoted Pirveli as saying that he was intending to enter into talks with the Russian political circles, including State Duma deputies and members of the Federation Council.
Now the agency has reported the following quote from the disgraced politician and businessman: "There are three parties taking part in the talks: Georgians, Russians and Europeans, and I am taking part as a representative of Georgia". Meanwhile there is not a single member of the opposition ranks who would have been inspired to start a dialogue with Moscow, especially in talks of that format. Moreover, opponents of the Georgian regime, who belong to various parties and movements, immediately joined together to disown Levan Pirveli.
The following reasons were given.
A party colleague of Pirveli and leader of the Industrialists party Zurab Tkemaladze: "Nothing is known about the talks which he held in Russia in the role of chairman of the opposition's Coordinating Council. Actually I don't have any information about the existence of such a council in Europe and I have never taken part in talks like those."
Leader of the opposition Conservative party Kakha Kukava: "The United Opposition has no links to this man. Perhaps he does represent some group, but I have no information about this."
One of the leaders of the New Right party Manana Nachkebia: "No opposition coordinating council exists in Europe and consequently Levan Pirveli cannot be its head. We have nothing to do with this man. We need to establish which opposition he means and whose coordinating council he is a representative of."
The Labour party, which had earlier promised to start a dialogue with Moscow, has also stopped acknowledging that any opposition coordinating council exists in Europe. Moreover, one of their members, Soso Shatberashvili, said: "We learnt that Levan Pirveli is holding some kind of meetings in Moscow from the media. Levan Pirveli has not contacted us".
So did these meetings actually take place? Apart from the aforementioned quote from Pirveli himself, there have been no other reports or comments, either in the Russian or Western media.
The demarche by Georgian opposition politicians only serves to confirm that there are simply no politicians in Georgia who at least partly agree with Russia's position concerning the actions of Georgia's leadership on the international stage. And there cannot be any, whatever situation was to unfold within the country.