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Tbilisi is backing down2010-10-12 19:24
A series called "Georgia's WTO passions" may soon spot the legendary Santa Barbara several points in its duration and dramatic appearance. This "season", there is a new hero in the foreground - head of the Georgian Cabinet Nika Gilauri. As a person number one should, Prime Minister of Sakartvelo tried to be on time everywhere: last week, his fiery speeches about Georgia's position concerning Russia's entrance in the World Trade Organization were heard from every rooftop. However, each time Gilauri seemed to be more and more drifted from reality.
Let me give you the outline of the previous series: during his visit to the US, Prime Minister of Georgia Nika Gilauri made two contradicting statements with a less than a 24-hour interval. First, he again confirmed that the country's government is ready to do everything to prevent Russia from joining WTO and solve the problems connected with Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Let us underline that the main claims against Tbilisi are related to the issue of customs checkpoints in Abkhazia and South Ossetia. According to Gilauri, Georgia speaks for the soonest settlement of these discrepancies with Russia, which would encourage Russia's soonest entrance into the World Trade Organization "under the rules of WTO itself". It's a pity the country showed no such fidelity
to principle in settling the situation at the border during the recent conflicts caused by the demarcation of the territory between Georgia and South Ossetia. Tbilisi was only capable of another flow of curses addressed at Moscow and Tskhinval.
However, let us get back to our hero. After Gilauri's mentioned statement, the entire "progressive-minded" Georgian community breathed freely and went to bed, assured of the seriousness of the country government's intentions. Still, the next day, an unpleasant surprise was in store for all the supporters of the anti-Russian character of the Georgian foreign policy: the head of the government stated that Tbilisi would not hamper Russia's admittance to WTO, though it continues expressing dissatisfaction with the situation with Abkhazia and South Ossetia. The fact that these statements were made by Gilauri only after he met with the representatives of American administration, including US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, can be regarded only as an incredible coincidence. Let me also remark that there had been information about eliminating the discrepancies between Moscow and Washington on the entrance of the former into the World Trade Organization. After that, only the most notorious supporters of Mikheil Saakashvili's regime were convinced that Georgia would keep preventing Russia from joining WTO. It was them that Nika Gilarui had to distress.
However, any popular series is shut down only when there are no more viewers or advertisers. Even if the events take the most unpleasant turn, one can always make an abrupt change in the script and make it bright again. That's the way things happened in our case. Hardly had the tears about the new concessions in favor of the "evil Russian bear" dried on the Georgians cheeks that Nika Gilauri's statement about Georgia's approval of Russia's entrance into WTO started growing in new detail. According to Press Secretary of the Head of the Cabinet Nikolay Mchedlishvili, the highly respected prime minister never said anything like that, his words being impudently misquoted by the Russian media. "Mr. Gilauri indeed said that Georgia is generally not opposed to Russia's entrance into WTO but only in a definite case. Tbilisi is going to approve of Russian Federation's entrance into World Trade Organization only on condition of Russia showing respect to the WTO by-laws", - Mchedishvili underlined.