The words of the Russian prime minister cost dear27.08.2009 | 22:38
Yesterday, the people of Abkhazia and South Ossetia celebrated the anniversary of recognizing their independence. Leaders of the republics Sergey Bagapsh and Eduard Kokoity thanked Russia. As to the Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin, he even addressed some kind words to Georgia, having stated that Moscow is implicitly helping Tbilisi via the International Monetary Fund and is not interested in humiliating Georgia. However, the latter has again discharged its "righteous" anger upon the Northern neighbor...
Laying of flowers to the monuments of those who died in struggle for the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, commissioning of the Dzuarikau-Tskhinval gas pipeline, a gala concert - these are the elements of the Independence Day cultural program in both republics.
Sergey Bagapsh thanked Russian President Dmitry Medvedev and leader of Nikaragua Daniel Ortegu, while in Moscow, Eduard Kokoity signed an agreement with Prime Minister Vladimir Putin on providing social and economic help.
Meanwhile, a roar of anger was heard from Tbilisi. The Georgian MFA protested against Russia's activity and campaigns in the South Caucasus without the official Tbilisi's consent, having called it "violation of the generally recognized norms and principles of international law". Deputy Head of Parliament Pata Davitaya kept complaining about the location of the Russian military bases in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, while the State Minister for Matters of Reintegration Temur Yakobashvili invited the people of the two republics back to Georgia.
Moscow took the pinpricks quite calmly. During his meeting with Eduard Kokoity, Vladimir Putin made a very important statement that should be considered by the world: "The international community should agree upon the rules in accordance to which we are going to live, - the Izvestia newspaper is quoting the Russian prime minister. - Either we focus upon the principle of a state's territorial integrity and will jointly follow this rule - in this case, Kosovo should be regarded as part of Serbia; or, we concentrate on national self-determination, in which case this right should be granted to minor nations seeking independence, such as the South-Ossetian people and the people of Abkhazia".
According to the head of the Russian government, not all the members of the international community of nations fully enjoy their sovereignty. "Being under the pressure of one superpower, the United States, they are actually following its political will without any wish to get to the heart of the events, - Vladimir Putin underlined. - However, I am sure that gradually the situation will change, for no one likes to be a vassal; no one wants to be more or less dependent. "Block" thinking of the cold war times is sooner or later going to dissolve in modern reality".
The event that happened on August 26 last year has clearly shown that there can be no double standards in the world in respect of the people's expression of will. In case with Serbia, the international community has depreciated the principle of the state territorial integrity; thus, in case with Georgia, it has to play according to the rules it imposed. Abkhazia and South Ossetia have been long seeking independence and the right for safe and stable existence, and they are hardly going to give a positive response to Mr. Yakobashvili's "welcoming gesture". Moreover, according to the Russian border troops' representatives, as soon as the situation at the border became more or less stable, about six thousand Georgian refugees have returned back to South Ossetia, as RIA Novosti reports. This surely costs much.
A conciliatory gesture made by Vladimir Putin in respect of Georgia costs much as well. "I would like to stress the fact that Russia is providing assistance to Georgia, - the Russian prime minister surprised everyone. - It is receiving huge funds through IMF, while we allocate a lot of money there that is given to needy countries, including Georgia. It means that we are not interested in humiliating Georgia", - the Izvestia newspaper informs. In addition, the head of the Russian Cabinet underlined that it is not enough to recognize the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia and there is still much to do, starting from point zero, perhaps, so that the people could feel the positive changes. "We did not meet today to summarize the last year; rather, we are going to shape the programs for the nearest future, now that there is peace, comfort and safety guarantees in South Ossetia".
Unfortunately, one could not prevent an incident on such a notable day for the people of Abkhazia and South Ossetia. According to RIA Novosti, there was an explosion in the center of the South-Ossetian capital. The incident happened not far from a music school; no one was hurt. In the opinion of the head of administration Boris Atoev, the explosion was made "to continue the terrorist activity of the Georgian special services in the territory of South Ossetia".
Anyway, the young republics have had a holiday. Abkhazia and South Ossetia are in their second year, making their extensive creative plans.
(Photo by: Reuters)