07TBILISI387, SAAKASHVILI DISMISSES ANTI-NATO DEBATE AND

WikiLeaks Link

To understand the justification used for the classification of each cable, please use this WikiSource article as reference.
Discussing cables
If you find meaningful or important information in a cable, please link directly to its unique reference number. Linking to a specific paragraph in the body of a cable is also possible by copying the appropriate link (to be found at theparagraph symbol).Please mark messages for social networking services like Twitter with the hash tags #cablegate and a hash containing the reference ID e.g. #07TBILISI387.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
07TBILISI387 2007-02-27 06:40 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Tbilisi

VZCZCXRO8455
PP RUEHDBU RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHSI #0387 0580640
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 270640Z FEB 07
FM AMEMBASSY TBILISI
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 5463
INFO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY

C O N F I D E N T I A L TBILISI 000387 
 
SIPDIS 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 02/26/2017 
TAGS: PGOV PREL GG RU
SUBJECT: SAAKASHVILI DISMISSES ANTI-NATO DEBATE AND 
NEUTRALITY 
 
Classified By: Ambassador John F. Tefft for reasons 1.4 (b) and (d). 
 
 1. (U)  At a February 23 news conference, President 
Saakashvili dismissed as "foolish" the recent public debate 
over whether Georgia's NATO aspirations will prevent it from 
restoring territorial integrity over the separatist regions 
of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.  The debate began on February 
16, when Traditionalist Party leader Akaki Asatiani stated on 
a popular TV show that the GOG should consider a policy of 
neutrality and abandon its NATO aspirations in order to 
receive unspecified "concessions" from Russia on the 
breakaway regions.  Asatiani was referencing a February 6 
call by Russian Ambassador Kovalenko, for Georgia to become a 
"neutral state." 
 
2. (U) Senior ruling party MPs dismissed Asatiani's comments, 
calling them part of an "anti-NATO campaign" implemented by 
"marginalized Georgian political forces," and sponsored by 
the Kremlin.  Givi Targamadze, chair of the defense and 
security committee in Parliament, said this campaign is 
designed to derail Georgia's NATO bid.  He added the campaign 
is based on two false premises: that if Georgia were to give 
up its NATO bid, then Russia would "restore Georgia's 
territorial integrity over Abkhazia and South Ossetia," and 
that NATO integration would make it impossible for Georgia to 
regain the separatist territories.  The National Movement 
called on all political parties to voice their positions on 
Georgia's NATO accession. 
 
3. (C) During a series of meetings with Ambassador, senior 
opposition leaders including Salome Zourabichvili of 
Georgia's Way and David Usupashvili of the Republican Party 
-- who support NATO accession as a national priority -- said 
that although NATO integration remains popular among 
Georgians, the neutrality argument could have some traction 
if it were perceived to lead to the return of the 
territories, particularily Abkhazia.  They underlined that 
the public consistently ranks restoring Georgia's territorial 
integrity as the number one GOG priority. 
4. (C) Comment: Saakashvili's public dismissal of "trading 
Georgia's NATO aspirations for Russian concessions on the 
separatist regions," is a first step to the ongoing public 
information campaign about the benefits and responsibilities 
of NATO membership.  We will encourage the GOG to follow this 
up with continued outreach efforts.  The resonance this idea 
has in some sectors of the public indicates how important 
reclaiming the separatist territories remain in the minds of 
most Georgians.  End Comment. 
TEFFT

Wikileaks

Advertisements
Post a comment or leave a trackback: Trackback URL.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: