Georgian Officials Speak of U.S. Congressmen’s Letters to PM Gakharia

On January 27, Georgian Foreign Minister Davit Zalkaliani said that the recent letters addressed to Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia from the United States Congressmen contain “subjective information” based on “factual inaccuracies” and that  addressing them requires “accurate communication.” He noted that Georgian leadership intends to provide each and every addresser with “a comprehensive information.”

“For us, the position of the U.S., which is the main strategic partner of Georgia, is very important. For us, the position of each Congressman is the position shared [to us] by our friendly country,” Zalkaliani said, noting that the Congressmen are very well aware of Georgia’s recent “very high standards of democracy,” and that the U.S.-Georgia strategic partnership has never been “on such a high-level.”

Minister Zalkaliani, who is attending the winter session of the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe (PACE) in Strasbourg on January 27-31, stated that information on economic decline in Georgia is not true, and that on the contrary, the country showed “significant growth” as indicated by recent international rankings. Moreover, he said, there are over 200 American companies registered in Georgia and none of them can complain of harassment.

“I think that personal communication is better and more effective than communication through letters,” Zalkaliani said, adding that in near future Georgian delegation will visit the U.S. and provide each author of the letter “with detailed, comprehensive information about the processes going on in the country.”

Parliament Speaker Archil Talakvadze also stated today that a visit to the U.S. has been already scheduled for February, among others with the U.S. Congressmen and Senators.

Earlier on January 23, Prime Minister Giorgi Gakharia stated as well that “we are always ready to sit down and calmly discuss all issues with our strategic partners.” “Probably, the letters do not make [an appropriate] form strategic partners and friends should communicate with each other… We are ready to discuss all assessments, even sharp, fair or unfair, from our point of view, and we plan to do it in the near future,” he told journalists at the World Economic Forum in Davos.

He further noted that “no matter what motives may exist, we believe that behind such letters or such actions are the frank steps in support of friendship and Georgia’s democratic development and I am convinced that the United States – our strategic partner – supports it.”

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