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Feb 21, 2021
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The Spectator: The West needs Georgia as a reliable partner in the Caucasus

“The Caucasus continues to be of strategic importance as a gateway between Europe and Asia”

“The first manifestation of political instability in the Caucasus in 2021: the Prime Minister of Georgia Georgy Gakharia announced his unexpected resignation on Thursday. His successor will be the country’s sixth prime minister in eight years. All of them, including Gakharia, were members of the same party – the Georgian Dream party, which has retained its control in parliament since 2012, ”

– writes the weekly British conservative magazine The Spectator, published since 1828.

The publication tells about the founder of this party – a billionaire Bidzine Ivanishvili, who was the first prime minister after the party’s victory in parliamentary elections eight years ago. True, he held this post for only a year, after which he resigned, stating that he had achieved everything he wanted, while remaining the leader of the party.

According to Viewer, all dismissals and appointments to the post of prime minister in Georgia occur at the direction of Bidzina Ivanishvili, although he claims to have retired from politics. In the case of the resignation of Giorgi Gakharia, the newspaper is also inclined to see “Ivanishvili’s hand”. Although the ex-prime minister himself explained the resignation by disagreements with the government over the arrest of an opposition politician Nikanor Melia – Gakharia is confident that Melia’s arrest will lead to a new round of confrontation between the authorities and the opposition.

The newspaper also recalls the accusations made by the opposition against the Georgian Dream party: although this party pursues a course of maintaining close ties with NATO and strives for the EU, there are rumors in Georgia about the secret ties of the ruling party with Moscow. Nevertheless, the opposition does not have real popular support, the opposition parties are small and there are many of them – about sixty, of which only two are large, which call for the return of the former president to the country Mikhail Saakashvili

“Meanwhile, the West needs a stable democracy in Georgia. The Caucasus region continues to be of strategic importance as a gateway between Europe and Asia, as it has been in history. The only pipeline for the transportation of energy resources from the Caspian Sea region, which is not controlled by either Russia or Iran, runs through the Caucasus. This was the main motivating factor for the West’s support for Georgia and Azerbaijan after they gained independence from the Soviet Union, ”

– reminds the author of the article the Ogden (Tim Ogden)

Another reason for supporting Georgia, according to the author, is Turkey, which has ceased to be a loyal ally of the West in the region, in connection with which sooner or later, but both Washington and Brussels will have to remove from there “Their regional strategic assets”… Against this background, only Georgia remains a true friend of the West in the Caucasus, unless, of course, the assurances of the opposition about the “pro-Russian” position of the ruling party are not taken into account.

Tim Ogden is sure that Georgia has recently begun to deviate from democratic norms, and the EU and the United States are to blame, which for twenty years beckoned Georgia to join the EU and NATO, while the final decision was postponed from year to year. Therefore, now they are expressing “deep concern” about what is happening in the country, moving further and further from democratic principles.

“We need to do something to stimulate Georgia – perhaps, to name a date when this country will finally be able to get NATO membership. Today, with covid-19 under relative control, foreign policy must once again be at the forefront of Western policy. If this happens, the West will need reliable allies abroad. As history shows, the Caucasus is of too great strategic importance to be ignored, ”

– concludes Viewer

Own corr. FSK

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