MP Paata Davitaia, the chairman of the temporary parliamentary commission charged with studying the August war, met western diplomats accredited in Georgia on October 13.
MP Davitaia told the diplomats that the Russian aggression against Georgia hadn't started in August, but “much earlier” in the early 90s during the first armed conflicts in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.
He said the relevant question was not who started the war, but whether the Georgian authorities could have averted it. “Even if Georgia made mistakes, it does not give Russia the right to recognize a part of Georgia as an independent state,” Davitaia said.
Davitaia's remarks were made in response to French Ambassador Eric Fournier's comments at the meeting, in which he said the commission should avoid speaking only about the Russian aggression, and should instead use balanced language when it comes to the question of who started the war. This, he said, was necessary to avoid the impression that the commission had already prejudged conclusions.
The commission, which was formed last week, will start summoning senior officials next week to listen to their testimonies.
Most opposition parties engaged in a long-standing boycott of Parliament have already dismissed the commission, saying its conclusions would be worthless. Parties in the parliamentary minority, which are represented on the commission, they dismiss as “the government’s satellites.” Davitaia – a former member of the opposition coalition – is a member of the parliamentary minority.