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Missions Left but Promised to Come Back2009-07-08 20:39
The international UN observers are leaving Abkhazia and South Ossetia, but do not exclude the prospects of continuation of their activity in these republics. All the parties of the conflict seem to want them back, as well as the USCE mission. But principles interfere. Diplomatic battles continue.
While discussing the circumstances of the UN mission completion in the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs, the representatives of this organization could not help speaking of the prospects of «continuation of the UN special agencies' activity, including in the occupied territories (in this way they call South Ossetia and Abkhazia in Georgia - edit.)». The report of the Press and Information Department of the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs on the meeting of the Vice Director of the agency Alexander Nalbandov and the Director of the Europe and Latin America Department of the UN for Peacekeeping Operations David Harland was very brief. «The parties agreed to continue working on the indicated issues, co-ordinating their
activities», ran the message.
By July 15 about 500 military observers and agents of the police component of the UN mission must leave the region as Russia put a veto on the draft resolution on the technical extension of the mission mandate. At the same time USCE observers are also leaving the new Caucasian republics as this organization has not been able to propose a new Caucasian mission mandate that would suit both parties of the August conflict.
But, judging by yesterday's meeting in the Georgian Ministry of Internal Affairs, both Georgians and Europeans will look for some loopholes allowing them to return the eye «of international monitoring» to the region. However, 200 EU observers are still remaining in Georgia. The representatives of the ex EU Chairman country, the Czech Republic, of the current Chairman, Switzerland, and of the European Commission are going to visit Georgia in the nearest future, as well as Abkhazia and South Ossetia. «We regret that Russia has refused to extend the UN and USCE mission, but the EU mission is still there, and we will continue our discussion how we will go on working and what we can do. As part of our «group of three» we will soon visit this region and see what we can do», said Tomas Bertelman, the Swedish ambassador in Moscow, according to RIA Novosti.