Tbilisi glad to lose05.04.2011 | 17:00
On April 1 the UN International Court rejected the Georgian government's suit against Russia for long-term "racial discrimination" and ethic cleansings. The judges found breach of order in the actions of the claimant: bilateral negotiations with the Russian side or an application to the inferior instance - the International Criminal Court of Hague - should have come first.
Hisashi Ovada, chairman of the International Court of UN, stated that jurisdiction of the judicial agency does not apply to this case. Before this statement, the Russian side gave similar explanations that Georgia did not follow - out of principle. As a result, Saakashvili's regime refused to talk to Russia or undergo required court procedures in Hague and suffered a new fiasco in foreign policy.
Nonetheless, ignoring the evident, official Tbilisi considers that the decision of the judges is in favor of Georgia. "The court confirms that the Russian Federation was a conflicting party in the conflict with Georgia. Not Abkhazia or South Ossetia, as Kremlin tried to interpret in the past. The court established that the suit between Georgia and Russia was connected with ethnic cleansing. It is true, as the court confirmed, that not all pre-trial activities were done, but the key point is that Russia was recognized a legitimate defendant in the litigation with Georgia. Thus, the court has dispelled all assertions Russia has been trying to present all these years that Russia is a third party not involved in the conflict. Our claim to present Russia as a conflicting party in the litigation with Georgia has been finally legitimized. The litigation, as you know, deals with ethnic cleansings", - deputy FM Nino Kalandadze stated.
GeorgiaTimes correspondent discussed the future of this suit and the facts that made the court of Hague arrive at these amazing conclusions with Paata Zakareishvili, a politologist.
"The case was invariably losing because the suit was not effected duly. Besides, the war began on August 8, and the suit was filed on August 12, so it is obvious that preparation was poor. It was stated that since 1990s ethnic cleansings were carried out, assisted or supported by Russia. And what did Georgia do at that time? Nothing, or on the contrary - Georgia was holding talks. So the suit is very weak. Russia's victory is logical. In December Russia launched a counterclaim that was well prepared on the basis of requirements of the court of Hague and won the case because of qualified and competent preparation of the counterclaim. As for Georgia, it was a pure PR-campaign, and Russia managed to break it. In fact, Georgia should have stayed away from this litigation. It would not have lost then", - the expert from Tbilisi thinks. According to him, the claim was filed to distract attention of Georgian public from Saakashvili's catastrophic adventure in August 2008.
"The country was outraged expecting the authorities to react. Georgia could not win the war initiated by Saakashvili's regime bringing tanks and bombs to Tskhinval. It was evident, and there had to be a way out of the crisis. People's expectations should have been met. The authorities filed this suit to pretend that the court of Hague will pass a verdict soon. And then three years later it turns out that the court will not consider the case at all. It's clear why the society was calmed down with this propaganda suit that was supposed to solve all problems. It is easy to explain why this was done - to put out the fire, to redirect people's wrath from the authorities onto Russia to avoid unrest in the country", - Paata Zakareishvili told GeorigaTimes correspondent.
The expert is sure that further proceedings have no sense. "As we know, presently the UN court in Hague is examining Russia's claim to forbid Georgia from repeated accusations of ethnic cleansings, and until the case is solved, Georgia has the right to complain again. Most probably, Russia's claim will be satisfied and Georgia will not be able to act through the UN Court of Hague, the highest instance for resolution of inter-state problems. Other courts remain - the court of human rights in Strasbourg and the criminal court in Hague. But they examine specific cases, not inter-state relations", - the politologist reminds.
According to him, the relations between two countries may move off the dead center after 2013. "Unfortunately, Georgian authorities are not ready to talk to Russia, though they declare they are. Unlike Russia that is not ready either and honestly admits its refusal to deal with Saakashvili's regime. Saakashvili says he wants a dialogue and is ready for that though in reality he acts otherwise. Behavior of Georgian politicians in North Caucasus shows they are not ready for the negotiating process", - the expert is sure.