(Tbilisi February 17, 2003. Civil Georgia)
- As anticipated Georgian authorities prolonged Russian peacekeepers' mandate deployed in the Abkhazian conflict zone under the auspices of the Commonwealth of Independent States.
The decision was taken at the meeting of the National Security Council late today.
Last week US Department of State recommended Georgian authorities to prolong the peacekeepers' mandate, which expired in January, for another six month.
The Georgian authorities posed three demands to extend the mandate: closing down the railway link, which was unilaterally reopened by Russia with Abkhazia, suspension of granting Russian citizenship to Abkhazia's residents and extension of the peacekeeper mandate over the Gali district, so that IDP would be able to return at least to Gali.
So far Georgian authorities failed to convince Moscow to fulfill these demands.
- United Nations Association of Georgia
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