Georgia Summons Armenian Diplomat over Meeting of Armenian, S.Ossetian Parliament Speakers
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 4 May.'15 / 21:16
Georgian Foreign Ministry summoned Armenia’s ambassador to express its “extreme concern” over a meeting between speaker of Armenian parliament Galust Sahakyan and chairman of Georgia’s breakaway region of South Ossetia’s parliament Anatoly Bibilov.
The meeting was held in breakaway region of Nagorno-Karabakh. News about the meeting was first reported by a press office of breakaway South Ossetia’s parliament on May 1, saying that Bibilov was in Nagorno-Karabakh to “observe” May 3 parliamentary elections. It also said that Bibilov was there upon invitation of speaker of Armenian parliament Galust Sahakyan, but this part of report about invitation from Sahakyan was later retracted by the breakaway South Ossetian parliament’s press office, which said that it was “incorrect.”
A spokespersof Armenian Parliament, Arsen Babayan, confirmed that the meeting took place, but he told Armenpress news agency: “The meeting between Galust Sahakyan and Anatoly Bibilov was purely of private nature. No official issues were discussed whatsoever. A meeting between private individuals has nothing to do with political positions.”
Similar remarks, insisting that the meeting was “not official”, were also made by a spokesperson of the Armenian embassy in Tbilisi.
The Georgian Foreign Ministry said on Monday evening that it summoned Armenia’s ambassador Yuri Vardanyan, who was told by Georgian deputy foreign minister Gigi Gigiadze that the meeting in question “runs counter to the spirit of traditionally friendly relations between Georgia and Armenia, and harms bilateral relations.”
“The Deputy Foreign Minister also expressed bewilderment over the reports that the meeting was unofficial and noted that any communication of officials [from Georgia’s] friendly countries with representatives of occupation regime is unacceptable for the Georgian side,” the Georgian Foreign Ministry said.
“The Armenian ambassador expressed regret over the case and said that he would immediately convey Georgia’s position to Yerevan,” the Georgian Foreign Ministry said.Source : http://www.civil.ge/eng/article.php?id=28242
Shortly after the Georgian Foreign Ministry reported about summoning of the Armenian diplomat, Georgian PM Irakli Garibashvili’s office reported about a phone conversation between PMs of Georgia and Armenia.
“PM Garibashvili phoned his Armenian counterpart Hovik Abrahamyan and spoke about the meeting between so called parliament chairman of Tskhinvali’s occupation regime Anatoly Bibilov and speaker of the Armenian parliament Galust Sahakyan,” the Georgian PM’s office said.
“As the Armenian PM explained, Anatoly Bibilov was in Nagorno-Karabakh on a nonworking day for a private visit and has an informal communication with Galust Sahakyan. No official issues were discussed, neither those related to Georgia’s occupied territories,” the Georgian PM’s office said.
“Hovik Abrahamyan reiterated unwavering support towards Georgia’s territorial integrity and sovereignty and emphasized on Armenia’s good neighborly and friendly stance towards Georgia,” the Georgian PM’s office said.
Also on May 4, the Georgian Foreign Ministry released a statement, like it usually does when elections are held in breakaway Nagorno-Karabakh, “reaffirming its support for Azerbaijan’s sovereignty and territorial integrity” and stating that it “does not recognize the so-called ‘parliamentary elections’ held on May 3, 2015 in the Nagorno-Karabakh region of the Republic of Azerbaijan.”
“The Georgian Foreign Ministry hopes that all possible formats will be used for the peaceful settlement of the Nagorno-Karabakh conflict,” it said.
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