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The Abkhaz put the Turks in their place2010-04-20 21:13
The Turks have always been welcomed in Abkhazia with open arms. However, the Turkish diplomats had to come across several harsh statements in Sukhum yesterday. The point is that Ankara responded to Tbilisi's request to help Georgia with the reintegration and offered the Abkhazians the "Involvement via cooperation" strategy, which they ignored.
President of Abkhazia Sergey Bagapsh found it unnecessary to receive Head of the South Caucasus Department of the Turkish MFA Nurdan Bayraktar Goder and Turkish Ambassador to Georgia Levent Murat Burkhan.
The point is that they simply brought the Georgian strategy "concerning the occupied territories" to Sukhum.
The words of the Abkhaz president are cited in large letters on his official website: "We have no intention even to take note of Georgia's so-called Strategy for Settlement of Relationship with Abkhazia. The inalterability of our position is based upon the sad experience of the past years and the clear understanding of the fact that Georgia has got no intention to sign the agreement on the non-resumption of hostilities".
Naturally, the Abkhaz government is already acquainted with the document, which has been submitted by the Georgians during the discussions in Geneva. However, to receive the strategy from the enemy's hands and ignore it is one thing. Another thing is the strategy of reintegrating into the hateful Georgia imposed by the Turkish partners.
Ankara suggested its own way of settling the Caucasian problems after the war in South Ossetia. However, the Turkish thesis about "the Caucasian platform" was never developed.
The Turks found themselves in an uncomfortable situation. On one hand, they could not leave the Abkhazians without support, whose relatives comprise a powerful expatriate community in Turkey. On the other hand, they did not want to quarrel with the neighboring state where they have got their own economical interests. Their investments in Georgia exceed other countries' investments. The largest projects include the construction of hydroelectric power station and electric line in Adzharia that would help Turkey solve the problems of electric power supply.
The Turkish businessmen's unofficial contacts with the Abkhaz irritated Tbilisi. The Turkish vessels heading for Abkhazia were detained more than once until a scandal broke out concerning the Buket tanker, which resulted in Russia sending its patrol boats to the Abkhaz shores. Another wide scandal was caused by the incident with the Benetton shop opened on the quay in Sukhum by the Turkish branch of the famous Italian company.