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‘No War Thanks to Kouchner’ – Georgian Minister Says
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 14 May.'08 / 11:29

Thanks to Bernard Kouchner, the French foreign minister, there is no war now in Georgia, Temur Iakobashvili, the Georgian state minister for reintegration, said on May 14.

Speaking with journalists shortly after his arrival back from Paris, Iakobashvili said: “Not so long ago we managed to avoid a very serious provocation due to interference of the French Foreign Minister. Mr. Kouchner has personally intervened. The fact that we live today in peace and nothing is happening is also because of him.”

Iakobashvili, however, has declined to go further into details and said: “I can not say more about it.”
 
When asked whether he meant that Abkhazia planned to launch military actions, the Georgian State Minister responded: “Abkhazia does not plan to do anything on its own. But there are some people in Abkhazia who can launch everything, including the war. We have no war today and it is a serious achievement.”

He also said that Georgia already had not only “moral support” from Europe, but also “more meaningful support.”

The Russian Foreign Ministry said in its press release issued on May 7 that Russian Foreign Minister, Sergey Lavrov, held a phone conversation with his French counterpart and discussed issues of bilateral relations. No other details were reported.

On May 6 State Minister Iakobashvili said at a news conference in Brussels that Georgia was “very close” to war. “We literally have to avert war,” he said.

And Russian news agencies quoted President Saakashvili as saying at a meeting with Russian journalists in Batumi on May 8: “I think several days ago we were very close to that, and the threat still remains.”

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