SHEVARDNADZE CONFRONTED YELTSIN WITH HARD QUESTIONS AT CIS SUMMIT.
Publication: Monitor Volume: 3 Issue: 203
In an October 27 broadcast to the country, Georgian president Eduard Shevardnadze disclosed that he had presented a comprehensive indictment of Russian policies toward Georgia at the closed meeting of CIS countries’ presidents. Shevardnadze said that he asked Russian president Boris Yeltsin to explain why Russia has:
— "Joined the few countries that shelter terrorists, assiduously hiding the group that committed terrorist acts in Georgia [a reference to Igor Giorgadze’s group of state security officers involved in the 1995 abortive coup and assassination attempt against Shevardnadze]. Why are you doing this? If you expect the incumbent [Georgian] president to be toppled and you have a ready agent in Moscow, you are deluding yourself."
— "Cheated us with regard to Abkhazia. We have since 1992 signed four agreements involving Russian guarantees. Is it not a fact that tens of thousands of men trained in Russia and armed to the teeth by Russia fought in Abkhazia?"
— Removed almost all modern military equipment from Georgia in 1991-94, including aircraft and air defense equipment worth up to $2.5 billion, in violation of CIS agreements on sharing the ex-USSR’s military property.
— Refused for the last three years to allot to Georgia a small share of the ex-Soviet Black Sea Fleet, in contrast to Ukraine, which has supported Georgia’s position. (Radio Tbilisi, October 27. See also item below)
Last week, senior Russian military officials virtually promised to hand over four coastal guard cutters to Georgia, subject to Yeltsin’s ultimate approval. But on the eve of the CIS summit, Shevardnadze stated that "this does not mean that the problem is being resolved…I have heard promises from a higher level, but words never turned into deeds." Simultaneously, Georgia’s Foreign Ministry handed the Russian Foreign Ministry a note requesting the initiation of talks on compensation for the military hardware removed unlawfully from Georgia. Tbilisi also announced its intention to raise this issue with Russian deputy prime minister Valery Serov, who was scheduled to co-chair a meeting of the Russian-Georgian intergovernmental cooperation commission in Tbilisi this week. Moscow reacted by postponing the visit and the session. (Radio Tbilisi, October 20; Russian agencies, October 21-22)
Seleznev in Chisinau Presses for Military Pact.