08TBILISI1595, INSIDE GEORGIA’S MINISTRY FOR REINTEGRATION – NO

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. #08TBILISI1595.
Reference ID Created Released Classification Origin
08TBILISI1595 2008-09-16 14:55 2011-08-30 01:44 CONFIDENTIAL Embassy Tbilisi

VZCZCXRO3945
PP RUEHFL RUEHKW RUEHLA RUEHROV RUEHSR
DE RUEHSI #1595/01 2601455
ZNY CCCCC ZZH
P 161455Z SEP 08
FM AMEMBASSY TBILISI
TO RUEHZL/EUROPEAN POLITICAL COLLECTIVE PRIORITY
RUEHBJ/AMEMBASSY BEIJING PRIORITY 0107
RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 0098

C O N F I D E N T I A L SECTION 01 OF 02 TBILISI 001595 
 
SIPDIS 
 
E.O. 12958: DECL: 08/12/2018 
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM RU GG
SUBJECT: INSIDE GEORGIA'S MINISTRY FOR REINTEGRATION - NO 
CLEAR PATH FORWARD 
 
Classified By: AMBASSADOR JOHN F. TEFFT FOR REASONS 1.4 (B) AND (D) 
 
 1.  (C)  Summary and Comment: In a September 9 meeting with 
poloffs, Deputy Minister for Reintegration David Rakviashvili 
provided both the Ministry's and his own personal insights on 
Georgia's strategy on South Ossetia and Abkhazia. 
Rakviashvili's comments suggested the government does not yet 
have a clear plan or vision moving forward on conflict 
resolution in Abkhazia or South Ossetia.  While quite free 
with his opinions, Rakviashvili is fairly new to his 
position, and he himself made clear that he was offering his 
personal opinions, not necessarily those of the government 
inner circle.  Nevertheless, the fact that he qualified so 
many of his remarks as personal opinion reinforced EmbOffs' 
sense that the government is searching for a strategy.  He 
believed his government should focus on consolidating reforms 
in undisputed Georgian territory and defer resolution of the 
territorial issues.  Rakviashvili's emphasis on developing 
democratic and economic institutions in Georgia proper as the 
key to moving forward seemed to suggest that development at 
home would be a priority, at least in the near term.  End 
Summary and Comment. 
 
MINISTRY'S PRE-HOSTILITY ACTIVITIES 
----------------------------------- 
 
2. (C) Rakviashvili began the meeting by explaining some of 
the philosophical underpinnings of the Ministry of 
Reintegration.  Originally called the Ministry for Conflict 
Resolution, the Ministry changed its name in January 2008 to 
reflect a shift in government approach to one of integrating 
not only the disputed territories, but the people of the 
territories as well.  The Ministry's activities of confidence 
and relationship building in the conflict regions 
unfortunately made little progress over the last few years, 
according to Rakviashvili, due mainly to the peacekeeping 
forces who have supported the separatist governments. 
 
3. (C)  Before the outbreak of hostilities on August 7, the 
Ministry's programs in South Ossetia addressed mainly civil 
integration issues and human rights of the ethnic minorities. 
 This work was especially fruitful at the grassroots level 
between farmers and other people with trading links. 
Rakviashvili explained the Ministry was also planning a 
nationwide campaign to encourage tolerance towards minority 
groups. 
 
4. (C) Rakviashvili raised a concern with some western 
(non-U.S.) NGOs operating in Abkhazia.  He claimed that some 
groups charged with promoting inter-ethnic harmony had 
actually done the opposite by separating Georgian and Abkhaz 
children participants and promoting bias and separatism.  He 
indicated an interest in discussing what kinds of programs 
might be more effective in engaging with the local 
communities. 
 
PERSONAL OPINION ON WAR AND ITS OUTCOMES 
---------------------------------------- 
 
5. (C) Rakviashvili surmised that the Russians acted when 
they did due to the increased speed in which the Georgian 
government was internationalizing the conflicts.  He stated 
that the government now needed to evaluate its mistakes and 
answer all questions and criticisms of its actions, even the 
most sensitive.  According to Rakviashvili, the government's 
current vision regarding reintegration is unclear, with all 
previous frameworks now invalid.  He was confident that there 
is no prospect of any future military solution, with the 
priority now on diplomatic efforts. 
 
6. (C) In addition, in his personal opinion, democracy in 
Georgia had been largely "virtual," as most people had no 
direct experience with democracy.  The goal now must be to 
stabilize the democratic system. He suggested that Georgia 
should focus on consolidating its progress in democracy and 
economic development on the territory it controls.  He did 
not go so far as to say that Georgia should adopt the passive 
approach of luring Abkhazia and South Ossetia back into the 
fold by establishing a prosperous and democratic society, 
calling such a scenario naive.  He did suggest, however, 
that, for the time being, Georgia should focus on those areas 
it can control. 
 
7. (C)  One of Rakviashvili's major concerns was the fate of 
the Georgians living in Gali, across the cease-fire line in 
Abkhazia.  According to him, there are many instances of 
human rights violations, and the ability of Gali residents to 
trade with Zugdidi has become limited.  If these people are 
not able to trade freely, they may be forced to leave Gali, 
leading to a new wave of IDPs. 
 
 
TBILISI 00001595  002 OF 002 
 
 
THE FUTURE OF SOUTH OSSETIA AND ABKHAZIA 
---------------------------------------- 
 
8. (C) Rakviashvili thought that South Ossetia could be 
reintegrated, if the government provides for the people.   He 
did not regard the conflict with South Ossetia as ethnic in 
origin, as there are 30-
40,000 South Ossetians living in 
Georgia proper, and 30% of South Ossetian families are mixed 
with ethnic Georgians. His top priority was the care of IDPs, 
to include (1) supporting those IDPs who have returned to the 
so-called "buffer zone" behind Russian checkpoints, (2) 
creating educational opportunities and providing social 
benefits to them, and (3) providing benefits for the South 
Ossetians living in Georgia proper.  He stated that Abkhazia 
presents a more difficult challenge, as the Abkhaz leadership 
clans are integrated with Russian and Turkish clans, and that 
all of the Abkhaz leadership hate the Georgians. 
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: