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Saakashvili: I won’t run for third term2008-12-18 16:19
Georgia's president Mikheil Saakashvili continued a series of meetings he started last week and this time he invited journalists from Georgian TV companies to the state chancellery.
As usual the meeting was broadcast live and featured the president speaking about the coming financial crisis, necessity to preserve and develop economy, impossibility of early elections, situation in conflict areas, Russia's intentions and a lot of other issues.
As before at this meeting Georgia's president emphasized that Georgia would face the financial crisis and its burden would be especially heavy for the population in early 2009. At the same time he comforted his people by a promise that the crisis would last about six months and would be followed by a slow but steady recovery.
According to Saakashvili the government will do its best to preserve the economy, prevent the banking system collapse, provide for stability of energy sector and emerge from the crisis in a stronger and more stable form than before it.
To the journalists' question whether the country is threatened by a new aggression from Russia and if a new armed confrontation might begin, the President said that the Russian aggression had not been over yet as Russians occupied significant territories of Georgia, but that all was temporary and Russia would not be able to maintain its influence there for a long time.
At the same time Saakashvili believes that Russia is not apt to a new war in the nearest future as it has serious internal problems. Besides Georgia is supported by the international community that will surely force Russia to conform to the international obligations.
"We are told Russia is ready to restore diplomatic relations if we fulfill certain conditions, but they also say that they will establish their embassies not only in Tbilisi but in Sukhum and Tskhinval which is absolutely inacceptable to us", - the president stated.
He also stressed that he was in favor of people's democracy efforts that were made by culture and church activists trying to restore relations between two countries.
Saakashvili also stated that Georgia would undoubtedly stick to the Euro-Atlantic integration.
He ascertained the journalists that Georgia's government was on good terms with the foreign partners, with the current and new US administration.