Speaker of the Georgian Parliament Shalva Papuashvili on Thursday said that it was “simply naive or malicious” to downplay a threat of war in Georgia, noting the country had experienced three wars involving Russia.
Papuashvili noted the ongoing occupation of Georgian territories by Russian forces, with about 10,000 Russian soldiers deployed in Abkhazia and Tskhinvali (South Ossetia) regions.
[S]aying [the threat of armed conflict] is unrealistic in a country that has seen three wars involving Russia; in a country where territories have been occupied by up to 10,000 Russian soldiers deployed here [in the occupied regions]; in a country where there are provocations and kidnappings of our citizens along the occupation line, [...] is either simple naivety or maliciousness”, the Parliament official said in an interview with Imedi TV.
The head of the Georgian legislative body stressed that on the backdrop of Russia waging an “aggressive war” against Ukraine, the threat of armed conflict for Georgia was “real”.
We heard direct appeals [towards Georgia], given in different forms, like ‘Russia is preoccupied at the moment, go for [a forceful retaking of] Abkhazia and Tskhinvali’”, Papuashvili said in reference to statements by some Ukrainian officials that said Georgia would help Ukraine’s defence efforts against Russia if it took action to retake its occupied regions while Russian forces were involved in the ongoing war.
[There were] [a]lso appeals by some Georgian politicians that we should arm ourselves now and use this window of opportunity [to regain control over the territories]. All this is incitement leading to the idea that you can solve some issues by military means”, the Parliament official concluded in his comments.