Russia is right to ask for “respect and responsibility” from Georgia and should show exactly the same attitude towards its neighbour country, Matyas Eorsi and Luc Van den Brande – co-rapporteurs from the Parliamentary Assembly of Council of Europe (PACE) in charge of monitoring Georgia – said at a news briefing in Moscow on November 29, according to PACE.
Following a trip to Georgia, the co-rapporteurs arrived in Moscow on a three-day visit to discuss the current tensions between the two countries.
“The politicians from both countries, including at the highest level, need to stop exchanging verbal provocations and show the same wisdom as their societies,” the co-rapporteurs said in Moscow.
They called for specific steps aimed at defusing the tension. In particular, they said that Russia should lift the economic sanctions against Georgia, end the transport blockade and send its ambassador back to Tbilisi, while Georgia should seek new ways of communicating and cooperating.
The co-rapporteurs expressed concern over reported violations of the human rights of ethnic Georgians, including some with Russian citizenship, as part of efforts by the Russian authorities to combat illegal immigration. They demanded that all such violations be thoroughly investigated and legal measures taken against the perpetrators.
The co-rapporteurs reaffirmed that xenophobia and racism, outbursts of which have affected Georgian nationals in Russia in the past two months, are incompatible with the values and standards of the Council of Europe.
The PACE co-rapporteurs plan to report their findings to a meeting of the Monitoring Committee scheduled for December 13 in Paris.