Published: Thu, August 09, 2018
Global | By Marsha Munoz

Russian premier opposes Georgia's accession to NATO

Russian premier opposes Georgia's accession to NATO

"If our Georgian colleagues are willing, we will not say no", Medvedev added.

However, countries with ongoing territorial conflicts can not join the Alliance, according to North Atlantic Treaty Organisation rules.

"Georgia once again calls on the Russian Federation to stop its illegal actions on the territory of Georgia and to fulfill its worldwide obligations, in particular, to revoke the recognition of occupied Abkhazia and South Ossetia as "independent states" and to fully implement the August 12 ceasefire agreement mediated by the European Union", the statement of Official Tbilisi reads.

The only United Nations member states to recognize the breakaway regions are Russia, Nicaragua, Venezuela, and Nauru.

The first is that ever since Russia's invasion of the Georgian breakaway province of South Ossetia in 2008, it has maintained military bases on territory that is internationally recognised as Georgian.

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Georgia's Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) has released a statement regarding the 10 year anniversary of the Georgia-Russia August war, which left 20% of Georgian territories occupied and turned thousands of Georgians into IDPs.

In a statement issued on Tuesday, the EU's foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini said the "Russian military presence in both Abkhazia and South Ossetia continues to violate worldwide law".

Russian President Vladimir Putin -- a prime minister during the war - said in 2012 that he approved a plan of military action against Georgia as early is in 2006 and that Russia has "trained South Ossetian militia".

Lithuanian Foreign Minister Linas Linkevičius added that given its presence in the Crimean peninsula, Russian Federation is also now occupying Ukrainian territory, insisting that there is need for solidarity and support with the Eastern Partnership.

Medvedev, who was Russia's president at the time, sent soldiers which defeated the Georgian military in five days.

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Prime minister stressed that there is a different government in Georgia now.

"This visit will not only be symbolic, but we will also talk with our colleagues, president and prime minister, Georgia's foreign minister, how we can specifically support them in cooperation with the European Union and NATO", Rinkevics added.

The Russian prime minister described NATO's eastward expansion as a major security threat to Russia. The results of the referendum for joining North Atlantic Treaty Organisation supported 77% of Georgian voters.

Last month, NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg reiterated support for Georgia's membership at a meeting in Brussels, but did not mention when that might happen. "It [Russia] is a direct aggressor".

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