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What has the European Union ambassador brought to Moscow?2009-06-23 18:59
The EU special representative for Caucasus Pierre Morel has arrived in Moscow on June, 23. He is going to discuss the matter of the international presence in the region after the UN and the OSCE missions terminated their work.
A visit to the Russian capital had been planned by Pierre Morel in the middle of last week, when it became known that the UN Security Council failed to find consensus as to the future of the organization mission in the Caucasus. More than that, after June, 30, as soon as the OSCE mandate expires, the European Union mission will represent the only international peace-making organization in the region. Thus, there are a lot of questions to be discussed by Morel with his Russian colleagues in Moscow.
Recently, appeals have been heard from Georgia as to granting additional powers to the EU mission in the Caucasus, which would allow its officers not only to watch the situation, duly informing the international community but also to participate in the events at the border with Abkhazia and South Ossetia. In addition, the official Tbilisi is insisting upon admitting the international observers to the whole territory of the South Caucasus, that is, to the territory of the young republics. In other words, they want to confirm the propaganda statement about "the territorial integrity of Georgia", for the mission headquarters are located in Tbilisi. The first proposal is more or less feasible due to the departure of the UN and OSCE missions, while the second one is acceptable neither for Tskhinval, nor Sukhum, nor Moscow.
Last year, President of Abkhazia Sergey Bagapsh made a warning that no EU observers would be ever allowed to the young republic. Since then, the official Sukhum's position has remained unchanged. According to Izvestia, recently, Head of the Abkhazian MFA Sergey Shamba said: "European Union is present in the region with a mandate that is unacceptable for Abkhazia and it will never be allowed to our territory". According to the Abkhazian minister, EU is openly demonstrating its unfriendly attitude to the young republic by saying that it will never recognize Abkhazia, thus "pressing upon the countries that are ready to recognize our republic".
It is "the missioners" themselves who are to blame for the absence of trust in the EU mission: since last August, the international experts have been given many chances to prove their efficiency. However, their passivity in investigating the border incidents, as well as the unconditional support provided to Georgia created an image of the EU mission as being the least objective and efficient one. Now Brussels has got a chance to correct the wrong image.