​ The United States welcomes Georgia’s peace proposals and urges Russia to withdraw its forces and reverse its purported recognition of the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent States

12.04.2018, Vienna – In his statement made in response to Georgian Deputy Foreign Minister David Dondua’s remarks at the meeting of the OSCE Permanent Council on 12 April 2018, the U.S. Representative welcomed the Georgian Government’s new peace initiatives which
provide increased opportunities for trade, mobility, improved livelihoods, and access to education.

Condemning the tragic death of Georgian citizen Archil Tatunashvili and the unacceptable delay in the return of his remains, the U.S. Permanent Representative cited the tragic death as the most recent example underscoring the immediate need for international mechanisms to improve security and stability on the ground.

The United States remains strongly committed to the Geneva International Discussions and hopes this can produce tangible progress toward lasting peace and security, as well as improvements in the lives of the affected populations.

The U.S. Permanent Representative also expressed his regret that participants of the last round of the Geneva International Discussions were again not able to discuss internally displaced persons because of Russia’s walk-out from Working Group II.

The U.S. Permanent Representative called for greater access to the occupied territories for the diplomatic community and human rights organizations highlighting the importance of the OSCE Mission in Georgia.  

“For almost 10 years, Russia has sought to create an alternate reality. While Georgia seeks opportunities for engagement with people living in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, Russia maintains relations with two fictitious countries as a ruse to control and occupy regions of a neighboring sovereign state. We will continue to use the Permanent Council and other fora to hold Russia accountable for its violation of international law, and to expose Russia’s attempts to distort the truth and rewrite history. The United States urges Russia to withdraw its forces to pre-war positions per the 2008 ceasefire agreement and reverse its purported recognition of the Georgian regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia as independent States” – the statement of the U.S. Permanent Representative reads.