Georgian head of state Eduard Shevardnadze told national radio yesterday that, more than most countries, Georgia had experienced the ineffectiveness of the UN and its Security Council in dealing with regional and local conflicts. Shevardnadze said that efforts to reform the UN should focus on enabling the organization to provide effective security guarantees to member countries, particularly in the context of combating separatism. He said that he would persist in raising that issue at the UN but that its 50th jubilee session was not a suitable time for doing so–an added reason, he said, for his decision not to attend the session. (18)
Although represented by an observer mission in Georgia, and also figuring as a mediator of the Georgian-Abkhaz conflict, the UN has not managed to prevent the Russian military from underwriting Abkhazia’s secession from Georgia, nor to offset Russia’s control of the negotiating process. Shevardnadze was probably also alluding to the UN’s 1993 decision, supported by the US, to confer the Georgia peacekeeping mandate on Russia–a decision which coincided with Russia’s acquiescence in the US operation in Haiti.
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