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Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia

 

Statement of the Georgian Foreign Ministry in reaction to assertions made by the Russian Prime Minister

 

At a meeting with Russian military commanders held on 22 February 2012, the Russian Prime Minister and presidential candidate, Mr. Vladimir Putin, once again gave voice to his wish for friendship with the Georgian people.

It is symbolically important that Mr. Putin spoke of this wish and of his love for the Georgian nation in the presence of the very military commanders whose troops, acting under his authority, dealt so brutally with the Georgian population in 2008.

It is hard to imagine whom Mr. Putin is referring to when he speaks of "the Georgian people". Thousands of families living in Georgia have lost relatives to Russia's military aggression and many instances of ethnic cleansing.

Because of the actions of the Russian authorities and of Mr. Putin in particular, hundreds of thousands of people were forced to flee their homes and become refugees. Their houses have either been razed to the ground by Russian armoured vehicles or misappropriated by Russian servicemen and all sorts of criminals, and monuments of Georgian culture continue to be ruined in Georgia's occupied territories.

Mr. Putin seems to have very strange ways of expressing his love towards the Georgian people.

 

Tbilisi, 22 February 2012

 
 

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