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US supports Georgia having direct talks with Russia

by | Dec 13, 2012

TBILISI, DFWatch — The US supports Georgia’s decision to start direct talks with Russia, Thomas O. Melia, US Deputy Assistant Secretary of State, said Thursday.

Melia, whose full title is U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights and Labor, was on an official visit together with Catherine Newcombe, Regional Director for Eurasia in the U.S Department of Justice.

The two are touring the Caucasus and left Thursday for their next stop Armenia.

Before leaving Thomas Melia commented on several issues as he met journalists at Radisson Blu Iveria Hotel.

“We support Georgia talking to Russia about how to normalize, improve relationship,” he said. “We look forward to Georgia making its own decisions about how best to move forwards with that dialogue.”

Melia noted that he had an interesting conversation with Davit Usupashvili, Speaker of Parliament and his predecessor Davit Bakradze, from United National Movement.

“As leaders of the two parliamentary factions, they demonstrated an ability and willingness to collaborate and finding responsible and honorable compromises on those policy questions, where compromise can be found and also to find a civil way to disagree, when political courses can’t agree.”

He said the visit to Georgia had been a productive one. They’ve met with the Georgian president, prime minister and other government officials. This visit reflects the US’s attitudes towards Georgia, he said.

“It may be a complicated period of cohabitation that this country has gone into. I do see that there are patriotic Georgians, people of good will on both sides of the political spectrum here and I think there is a basis for them to work together, to stabilize this transition, so that the change the voters of Georgia have asked for in the recent parliamentary elections can be managed in a way that’s consistent with stability and sustaining Georgia’s international commitments and domestic tranquility.”



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