Interviews

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In-depth interviews

Margvelashvili: This is a great partnership, but I will always demand more

By | October 4th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

  (Facebook.) During his work visit to New York last week, President of Georgia Giorgi Margvelashvili spoke with the Voice of America about U.S.-Georgia relations and his views on the Trump Administration’s support for Georgia.    Ia Meurmishvili spoke with the President.  She anchors Voice of America Georgian Service’s weekly show Washington Today and [...]

It was inevitable, if not in 2008 it would erupt later: Hamilton on August War

By | August 11th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Robert Hamilton. Anna Kalandadze of Voice of America/Georgia spoke to Robert Hamilton, Professor of Eurasian Studies at US Army War College on his recollections of Russo-Georgian war of 2008 and where the country is going ten years after.  […]

Trump about Kim: I like him, he’s a funny guy, very smart

By | June 14th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , , |

Greta Van Susteren interviews Donald Trump at the Singapore Summit. (VOA) President Donald Trump spoke with VOA contributor Greta Van Susteren after his summit talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore about what the two discussed and what to expect next. […]

Paul Stronski: Georgia has carved out as much independence as possible against very large and aggressive neighbor

By | June 6th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , , |

Paul Stronski is a senior fellow in Carnegie’s Russia and Eurasia Program, where his research focuses on the relationship between Russia and neighboring countries in Central Asia and the South Caucasus. Voice of America’s Ani Chkhikvadze sat down with Paul Stronski, Carnegie Endowment fellow in Washington DC to discuss Georgia’s domestic and foreign affairs. […]

John Bolton: President Trump has demonstrated he’s obviously not Barack Obama

By | May 21st, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , , , |

(Twitter.) Voice of America Contributor Greta Van Susteren interviewed US National Security Advisor, Amb. John Bolton at the White House.  Bolton discussed foreign policy, the Iran deal, North Korea and some other issues. […]

Nate Sibley: Russian corrupt money starts to corrupt institutions in the west as well

By | May 16th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , , , , |

Nate Sibley (VOA). Russian Kleptocracy has become such a big issue because they pushed it so hard, Vladimir Putin and group of his friends symbolize nothing more than an organized crime, we are seeing tentacles of the Kremlin growing outward from Russia, says Nate Sibley […]

Georgian President: West Awakening to Russian Security Threat in Historic ‘Now Moment’

By | March 16th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , |

Georgia’s President Giorgi Margvelashvili speaks to media after a ceremony at the memorial cemetery of the Georgian soldiers killed during the war with Russia over the breakaway region of South Ossetia in 2008 in Tbilisi, Georgia, Aug. 8, 2017. (VOA) Washington, VOA – Georgian President Giorgi Margvelashvili is calling for American and European leaders to capitalize on what he calls a palpable, growing international consensus about the scope, magnitude and immediacy of national security threats posed by Russian election interference and suspected assassination attempts on foreign soil. […]

Trump’s NSC advisor: We have to find ways to deal with new threat that Russia has perfected

By | January 20th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , |

H.R. McMaster at the US Army Basic Training. 2009 (US Army photo.) VoA contributor Greta Van Susteren interviewed H.R. McMaster, 26th National Security Advisor, serving under President Donald Trump, at the White House. This is a transcript of a part of the interview pertaining to Russia.    […]

Carpenter: Not only sanctions… the US & NATO can take military steps to gain advantage over Russia in the region

By | January 13th, 2018|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , |

Michael Carpenter (PennBidenCenter.) To assess the US national security strategy issues, efficiency of the Trump administration and threats coming from increasingly assertive Russia, Voice of America’s (VOA) Nana Sajaia interviewed Washington-based Michael Carpenter, Senior Executive Director at Pen Biden Center. […]

Damon Wilson: The victory makes GD fully responsible for where Georgia comes out

By | November 11th, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , |

Damon Wilson is an American foreign policy advisor and the current executive vice president at the Atlantic Council of the United States, a foreign and public policy think tank based in Washington, D.C. To assess the past local elections in Georgia, , Voice of America’s (VOA) Nana Sajaia interviewed  Washington-based Damon Wilson, Executive Vice-President of US Atlantic Council. […]

William Courtney: Russia might seek to annex Abkhazia

By | August 18th, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , |

William Courtney (rand.org) William Courtney, former US Ambassador to Georgia told Voice of America’s Anna Kalandadze that “President Putin’s August 8 visit underlined Moscow’s apparent determination to retain control of Abkhazia despite the costs to Russia’s international reputation. But the Kremlin […]

I hope there will be a dialogue about selling Georgia anti-tank and anti-aircraft weapons: policy specialist

By | July 30th, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , |

Daniel Kochis (Heritage Foundation) Voice of America’s Anna Kalandadze spoke to Daniel Kochis, a Europe policy specialist in the Margaret Thatcher’s Center for Freedom at the Heritage Foundation, a US Conservative think tank, ahead of US Vice President’s visit to Tbilisi. […]

Coffey: Trump’s finally come to the realization that Russia is not partner for U.S.

By | May 27th, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , |

Luke Coffey To assess the visit of NATO Parliamentary assembly to Tbilisi, Georgia, discuss future of Transatlantic relations and Pres. Trump’s visit to Europe Voice of America’s Anna Kalandadze spoke to Luke Coffey, Director, Douglas and Sarah Allison Center for Foreign Policy, […]

Alexandra Hall Hall: Georgian PM explores getting a free trade agreement with the U.S.

By | May 15th, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , |

“Georgia is not a post-Soviet state. It is a European state […] So, looking at a free trade agreement with the U.S. is kind of a maturing of the relationship.” To assess the recent visit of Georgian Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili to the U.S., Voice of America’s (VOA) Anna Kalandadze interviewed British diplomat and a political observer Alexandra Hall Hall. […]

Paul Goble: I fear that Trump will largely ignore countries like Georgia

By | January 22nd, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , |

Paul A. Goble. (VoA.) To assess the latest developments in the domestic and foreign affairs of Georgia, Voice of America’s (VOA) Anna Kalandadze interviewed Washington-based long-standing Eurasia observer Paul Goble. The Georgian-language interview first appeared on VOA.  Here is an English version: […]

Atlantic Council Vice-President: Perhaps it’s time to go on the offensive

By | January 9th, 2017|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , |

Damon Wilson, Executive Vice-President of the US Atlantic Council. To assess the visit by three top US Senators, John Mccain (R- AZ), Lindsay Graham (R-SC), Amy Klobucher (D-MN) to Georgia and Ukraine, Voice of America’s (VOA) Anna Kalandadze interviewed  Washington-based Damon Wilson, Executive Vice-President of US Atlantic Council. […]

Yalowitz: No radical changes in US-Georgia relationship under Trump

By | December 7th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Kenneth S. Yalowitz, former U.S. Ambassador to Georgia. DFWatch recently had a Skype interview with Kenneth Yalowitz, former US Ambassador to Georgia (1998-2001). Mr. Yalowitz emphasized that Georgia is a country which expects problems and delays on the way toward democratic reforms, while firmly moving forward […]

William Courtney: It won’t be easy for Trump to make big changes in US policy towards Russia

By | November 28th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , |

William Courtney: “Because of such wide Western consensus for sanctions against Russia, it will not be easy for the Trump administration to make big changes in that policy.” William Courtney, Former US Ambassador to Georgia and currently with the RAND Corporation in Washington DC, shared his views on the US President Elect Donald Trump’s foreign policy agenda with Anna Kalandadze of Voice of America’s Georgian service.  […]

Linderman: GD will have a tendency to consolidate power into one-party rule

By | October 17th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , |

“(Russia) spent a lot of money and all they managed was to have a small minority in Parliament. That proves that Georgians are still very much pro-West,” Laura Linderman says. Anna Kalandadze of Voice of America’s Georgian service discusses results of Georgia’s Parliamentary elections, and its importance for country’s future dynamics with Laura Linderman, of US Atlantic Council in Washington. Parts of this interview ran on VOA program. […]

NATO expert: Georgia is in a much closer to Alliance now than it was in 2008

By | September 12th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , |

George Benitez: ‘it’s very important to note, that NAC very rarely meets outside Brussels’. Voice of America’s (VOA) Anna Kalandadze spoke to George (Jorge) Benitez, Senior Fellow at the US Atlantic Council in Washington and NATOSource director, to discuss the North Atlantic Council’s latest visit to Georgia and other important aspects in bilateral relations.  Excerpts of this interview ran on a VOA’s program.  Here is the full interview:  […]

Russian-Turkish détente nothing that Americans should be concerned about: Former US Ambassador to Turkey

By | August 30th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , |

Ross Wilson: ‘It isn’t a sea change in the Turkish-Russian relations’ Ross Wilson, former US Ambassador to Turkey, currently Director of the Dinu Patriciu Eurasia Center at the Atlantic Council in Washington, DC summarizes latest developments in the Turkey-US and Turkey-Russia relations. The interview excerpts ran on the Voice of America’s program. Below is [...]

Interview: ‘Thinking Citizen’ and ethnic Azerbaijani activism in Georgia

By | June 17th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Ruslan Asad is an Azerbaijani civil society activist and a co-founder of the Thinking Citizen (Düşünən Vətəndaş) project, which brings together young representatives of Georgia’s ethnic Azerbaijani community. He told DF Watch about the project’s aims, successes, and future plans in the context of issues faced by the community. […]

Interview: Thomas de Waal on Georgia’s policy on Abkhazia

By | April 30th, 2016|Categories: Interviews|

Tom de Waal (http://carnegieendowment.org/) The senior associate with Carnegie Europe specialising in the Caucasus region, the author of books Chechnya: Calamity in the Caucasus, Black Garden: Armenia and Azerbaijan Through Peace and War and The Caucasus: An Introduction, Thomas de Waal discusses the need for nuanced approaches in Georgian policy towards Abkhazia and the future of Abkhaz–Georgian relations. […]

Unchallenged stereotypes blight Georgian–Armenian relations

By | October 18th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|

Levon Chidilyan (Alart) DF Watch discusses roots and manifestations of the anti-Armenian sentiment in Georgia with director of Cultural, Educational and Youth Centre Hayartun, Levon Chidilyan. DF Watch: Mr Chidilyan, how representative is Hayartun for Georgia’s Armenian c […]

What was lost when a mining company destroyed the ancient Sakdrisi site?

By | September 8th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

(Interpressnews.) In December, 2014, an archaeological site in southern Georgia was destroyed by the Russian mining company RMG Gold. What was lost in the blasts at Sakdrisi? Professor Thomas Stöllner at the University of Bochum in Germany is one of the people […]

Boris Iarochevitch: Georgia’s on track

By | August 24th, 2015|Categories: Interviews, News|

“For me as a part of the community here for four years, I think, it is very important for Georgia to do more in the field of environment, because I see that the situation in Tbilisi is very bad in terms of air pollution” (DF Watch) “I think that Georgia is almost there when it comes to fulfilling the visa liberalization action plan. Now it is up to the member states of the EU to decide. I think that people in Georgia deserve visa-free regime. I see no reason now to delay it further,” says Boris Iarochevitch, Deputy Head of Delegation of the European Union since 2011, said. […]

Activist: Russia stepping up anti-EU, pro-Eurasian Union efforts in Georgia

By | August 21st, 2015|Categories: Interviews|

Temur Kobalia says criticism against Georgian-Russian Forum has been intensified since it overtly declared its support to Georgia’s European ambitions (DF Watch) TBILISI, DFWatch–Russia has stepped up efforts to use ‘soft power’ in Georgia through state-sponsored non-governmental organizations and it would be difficult for the Caucasus nation to fend off pretensions of its assertive neighbor, the head of a Russian NGO says. […]

Europe Needs a New Narrative

By | July 25th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|

John Kornblum, American diplomat, businessman and former US ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany (New Eastern Europe) New Eastern Europe A Bimonthly Dedicated to Central and Eastern Europe An interview with John Kornblum, American diplomat, businessman and former US ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany. Interviewer: Matthew Luxmoore. Interview was […]

Interview: Kenneth Yalowitz on how Georgia is developing

By | July 20th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Kenneth S. Yalowitz, former U.S. Ambassador to Georgia. DFWatch recently had a Skype chat with Kenneth Yalowitz, former US Ambassador to Georgia, to discuss current events in Georgia, its Euro-Atlantic integration and issues in the region. Yalowitz extended his condolences to the victims of a recent flood in Tbilisi […]

Sleazy 90s transition – Paul Manning on “Shevardnadze Era” in Georgia

By | July 6th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|

Khevsur girls – girls in the village of Khakhmati, Khevsureti in 2002 (Paul Manning) TBILISI, DFWatch–When I heard Paul Manning, an anthropologist from Trent University (Canada) is visiting Tbilisi, I knew I had to meet him. Not only because of his papers on  toasts and supra culture, cartoons during the Rose Revolution, notion of terror in Pankisi, […]

Interview: How has Georgia changed since 2012?

By | July 3rd, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Lincoln Mitchell. Lincoln Mitchell, Associate Professor at Columbia University’s Harriman Institute, recently visited Georgia to attend a conference in Batumi from 18th to 19th June Georgia’s European way. After arriving in Tbilisi Mitchell, who is a Georgia-analyst, met with us […]

World famous game designer gets inspired by Georgian myths

By | March 1st, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , , , , , , , |

Mark Rein-Hagen in a game convention. TBILISI, DFWatch–“Amirani is the legendary first Zombie, some worship him. Legend has it that he is the original Prometheus and still chained to the Caucasus Mountains, he brought fire to humans and half life to us. Three Angels made him […]

Chemtai Yegon – a Kenyan woman living and teaching in Georgia

By | January 10th, 2015|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , , |

Teaching in Tserakvi village. Chemtai definitely prefers living in the village. “If my university was in the village I would go tomorrow” When Chemtai Yegon, a young woman from Kenya, came to Georgia a few years ago to teach English and study Georgian, she faced a lot of challenges, like her first real winter with frost and snow, ‘no one speaking English’, and some encounters with aggressive […]

Caucasus is caught between two ambitious powers

By | November 21st, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Ronald Suny is Professor of Social and Political History at Michigan State University. Ukraine and the Caucasus countries are caught between two ambitious powers: Russia, which wants to have hegemony in the former Soviet space, and the United States, which wants global hegemony, according to Ronald G. Suny, professor of political science and history […]

Interview: Francis Fukuyama on the war in Ukraine and NATO expansion

By | September 3rd, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Francis Fukuyama is professor of political science at Stanford University. Many Georgians are discussing how far Mr Putin will go in his attempt to subdue his neighbor Ukraine. Maybe he will take this important seaport of Mariupol and go to Odessa or even Kiev? What’s your opinion about the outcome of this conflict? I don’t really have a prediction about this […]

Interview with Kenneth Yalowitz, former US ambassador to Georgia

By | August 24th, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Kenneth S. Yalowitz, former U.S. Ambassador to Georgia. DFWatch: What’s your prediction, how will the situation around Ukraine evolve? Kenneth Yalowitz: What worries me is that you have a situation where the Ukrainian side is doing better militarily in Eastern Ukraine and we don’t know how the Russians are going […]

German film director Stefan Tolz on living in Georgia

By | August 15th, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

German film director Stefan Tolz. (DF Watch.) TBILISI, DFWatch–“Full Speed Westward” (Vollgas gen Westen) – this is the title of a new movie by German film director Stefan Tolz.  The movie opened in Georgia a few months ago and was well received. It is a documentary about Georgian reality, which shows […]

Russia might intervene in Ukraine if major violence

By | June 21st, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Professor Johan Galtung is a sociologist, mathematician and the founder of peace and conflict studies. TBILISI, DFWatch–Right now we have a civil war in Ukraine, says peace researcher Johan Galtung. He warns that Russia might intervene with a ‘short sharp shock’ if ethnic Russians are subject to widespread violence in eastern Ukraine. Russia is deploying troops […]

David Lidington explains the UK’s view on the Ukraine crisis

By | April 12th, 2014|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , |

David Lidington, Britain’s Minister for Europe. (Interpressnews.) TBILISI, DFWatch–We sat down with David Lidington, UK Minister for Europe, who visited on April 1-2, and asked him about Georgia’s association agreement with the EU and whether NATO should set it on course for membership. Is it possible that Russia will bring pressure […]

What is being discussed at the Geneva talks?

By | December 20th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Ketevan Tsikhelashvili is Deputy Minister of Reintegration. TBILISI, DFWatch–The talks between the parties in the 2008 Georgia-Russia war will meet in Geneva for another round of talks on March 25-26. It is known that the OSCE heads of the meeting this time will be from Switzerland. The last round of Geneva talks was held […]

Post-election talk with Georgia-analyst Lincoln Mitchell

By | November 25th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Lincoln Mitchell is Associate Professor at Columbia University’s Harriman Institute. DF Watch talked with Georgia-analyst Lincoln Mitchell, Associate Professor at Columbia University’s Harriman Institute. DFW: What has changed since July, when we last talked?L.M: The euphoria of winning an election, of unseating Saakashvili, of getting rid of […]

Interview with the UK Ambassador to Georgia

By | October 24th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Alexandra Hall Hall, the United Kingdom’s Ambassador to Georgia. (Embassy photo.) DF Watch sat down for talk with the recently appointed Ambassador of the United Kingdom to Georgia, Alexandra Hall Hall. DF Watch: The political situation in Georgia is interesting now, especially since we have presidential elections coming. What are your expectations? […]

Ambassador Yalowitz: Georgia is moving in the right direction

By | August 30th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Kenneth S. Yalowitz is former US Ambassador to Georgia. DFW: Almost eleven months have passed after Georgia’s parliamentary election of October 2012 when the Georgian Dream coalition defeated United National Movement and the entire politics changed. It led to a mixed response from the US. Now almost a year after the elections, what […]

Ukraine and Georgia went different ways

By | July 10th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Lincoln Mitchell, Associate at Columbia University’s Harriman Institute. Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili has made Georgia more free, while President Viktor Yanukovich made Ukraine less free when he came to power in 2010. Although the West’s “golden kid” lost the election both places, and former officials have been prosecuted, what happened in the two countries is different, […]

NDI’s Luis Navarro about the latest survey

By | April 18th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Luis Navarro, the National Democratic Institute’s Country Director for Georgia. (DFWatch photo.) DFWatch: What was the methodology of your latest survey? Were there any changes compared to the previous surveys that you’ve done in the past year? Luis Navarro: The methodology that we use is consistent. We use random route sampling; we use a Kish table […]

The UK’s position on current developments in Georgia

By | March 15th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , |

Simon Fraser, the UK’s Permanent Under Secretary and Head of the Diplomatic Service, is visiting Georgia. (DF Watch photo.) DF Watch spoke to Simon Fraser, the United Kingdom’s Permanent Under Secretary and Head of the Diplomatic Service, and David Moran, the UK’s Ambassador to Georgia, about the current situation. DF Watch: What is the view of the UK of our domestic processes as we for the […]

The world’s busiest interior minister

By | February 7th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch — One would think Georgia’s fresh interior minister would have his hands full, as his government has enforced a mass amnesty which has freed more than three thousand prisoners, but Irakli Gharibashivli says the crime situation in the country hasn’t […]

Georgia received complaint from another country about corruption

By | January 4th, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Foreign Affairs Minister Maia Panjikidze confirms in an interview with DF Watch that she has received a two page letter from a foreign country complaining about one of its citizens having been subjected to pressure from the previous Georgian government. She said a high […]

How Ivanishvili will reform Georgia’s courts

By | January 2nd, 2013|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

Deputy Minister of Justice Alexandre Baramidze says that there are many regulations in the current judicial system which contradict the Georgian constitution and international human rights principles. The reform of the court system which the Ministry of Justice has […]

Ivanishvili says his focus is on the economy

By | December 21st, 2012|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili says the main goal of the new government is to improve the economic situation and to strengthen the course of Euro-integration in the foreign policy, as well as to make certain steps to improve relations with Russia. DF Watch spoke with the […]

Interview with Irakli Alasania

By | December 7th, 2012|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch — Georgia’s Defense Minister Irakli Alasania sat down with DF Watch to talk about the bilateral security and defense cooperation with the US which he said has already started. A few days ago bilateral consultations were held in Tbilisi […]

What now for Georgian politics?

By | October 8th, 2012|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

A new coalition called Georgian Dream won a clear victory in the parliamentary election last week. Georgia-expert Lincoln Mitchell interprets the result. Did you expect these results?I believe last time we spoke, and certainly last time I was here, I mentioned that the NDI […]

Likely scenarios for the election aftermath

By | September 17th, 2012|Categories: Interviews|Tags: |

TBILISI, DFWatch – Georgia expert Lincoln Mitchell sees several possible outcomes of the election, and explained to us his assessment of the situation. DFWatch: Your prognosis, your predictions about these elections, its outcomes are interesting.Lincoln Mitchell: Well, we don’t know for sure […]

NDI’s Luis Navarro on the latest poll

By | September 8th, 2012|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

What are the main differences which occurred for the last survey compared to the last two surveys conducted by NDI?Most notable change since our last poll is that people’s attitudes about Georgian democracy improved. So what we have seen over time is that people’s […]

Saakashvili is not indispensable to the United States

By | February 27th, 2012|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , , |

What is most valuable to the U.S. in regards to Georgia is to have a leader who is supportive of the U.S., but also has democratic legitimacy. And there are plenty of politicians who could fulfill that precondition, according to Lincoln Mitchell, Associate at Columbia […]

Too little transparency at the top

By | November 17th, 2011|Categories: Interviews|Tags: , |

The DFWatch interview: Mark Mullen In an interview with DFWatch, Mark Mullen notes that the main problem in Georgia is a lack of transparency at the senior levels. In terms of corruption, he thinks that there is no so-called elite corruption in Georgia, but still there is less transparency ‘at the top’. Regarding the media, he [...]