Georgian PM says idea of “second front” comes from Ukraine’s high ranking officials

  • The Government head claimed that the Ukrainian authorities had carried out “orchestrated, coordinated and concerted actions” against the Georgian Government through the domestic “radical” opposition, further adding that “nothing came of it”. Photo via Government Administration

Agenda.ge, 19 Jul 2023 - 20:53, Tbilisi,Georgia

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili on Wednesday claimed the idea of a “second front” in the country amid the ongoing war in Ukraine was coming from the Ukrainian high ranking officials who had said that “their interest was to open a second front in Georgia and Moldova” amid the war in their country.

In his comments to the media, Garibashvili noted that the Ukrainian authorities had “openly” stated that “if the imprisoned former President Mikheil Saakashvili were in power, he would definitely start a war against Russia”.

The Government head claimed that the Ukrainian authorities had carried out “orchestrated, coordinated and concerted actions” against the Georgian Government through the domestic “radical” opposition, further adding that “nothing came of it”.

I know that last year Ukraine was one of those interested in us not getting the [European Union membership] candidate status, [...] Many of our European leaders confirmed this to me”, Garibashvili said and noted that he believed this “specific” actions were “temporary” and would end soon, reaffirming his “respect and love” for Ukrainian citizens and wishing them “peace and reunification” of their country.

The Georgian official also highlighted that the European Commission's report on Georgia in February showed the country was “ahead” of Moldova and Ukraine, and added that the country was also ahead of some of the EU and NATO member countries “in a number of rankings”.

Garibashvili stressed it was “questionable” that amid the war in Ukraine - with 20 percent of the country’s territory being occupied, tens of thousands of people killed and 20 million Ukrainian citizens being in exile- the Ukrainian authorities had time to make comments on “a loser and simulant [Saakashvili]”.

Ukraine did not react and did not start an investigation over Saakashvili’s illegal border crossing in October 2021, despite the fact that Georgia had presented evidence to Ukraine, as well as the driver's confession, who directly carried out Saakashvili's transportation”, he continued. 

The Government head also criticised the Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s decision last week to instruct the Ukrainian foreign office to summon the Georgian Ambassador to Ukraine and ask him to leave the country within 48 hours to hold consultations in Tbilisi.

He emphasised Georgia “does not ask for anyone's gratitude”, but called the act “a violation of friendship, diplomacy, and etiquette”, adding “when Kyiv was being bombed, our ambassador was the last one who stayed in the city, such man was sent to Tbilisi for ‘consultations’ ".

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