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Irakli Alasania’s Statement
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 24 Dec.'08 / 20:11

Unofficial translation

Press statement by Irakli Alasania Concerning Resignation

Tbilisi, December 24, 2008

It is known for the society that on December 4, I resigned from the position of the Permanent Representative to the UN under my own decision. The reason of this decision was fundamental differences of views that emerged recently between me and the Georgian President on internal political and military-political development issues, including on conflict resolution issues. 

In my official capacity I permanently tried to contribute to peaceful resolution of the conflicts.

My differences with the authorities on the principle level were eventually demonstrated in assessments made to the August events and in the vision on how to help the country out of this crisis.

I think that this crisis was caused by unilateral, chaotic, non-institutional process of decision-making on vital issues and absence of transparent system of governance.

I was often telling the President about my critical attitude towards these issues. Unfortunately, these opinions were not shared, that made me sure that it was practically impossible to influence positively on the developments in my capacity of [Georgia’s UN envoy].    

I informed the President about my desire [to resign] long ago; the last time I spoke on the matter with the President was two months ago. However, permanent crisis situations in the conflict zones and eventually the August war postponed to materialize my decision [to resign].

I always believed that the real possibility of unification of the country was and still is the peaceful way of conflict resolution.

The key duty of the authorities was to avert military confrontation, which was predictable and in which we got involved despite numerous warnings of our strategic allies.

There is no doubt that our adversary was well-prepared and informed.

The country’s self-defense capabilities turned out to be unprepared for repelling the aggression.

The President failed to assess either our capabilities, or the scales and catastrophic consequences of the expected aggression.

There were possibilities to avert the war with Russia.

The President of Georgia is responsible for engaging Georgia in this provocative war.

Today Georgia’s security is unprotected; the state borders are infringed; large part of the country’s territory is occupied; another wave of ethnic cleansing has added tens of thousands of unprotected and destroyed families to already existing hundreds of thousands of displaced persons; people live in fear of new military confrontation.

Restoration of the territorial integrity has become incomparably difficult.  

Instability triggered by the war has deprived the country of investment attractiveness. Absence of economic strategy, permanent pressure on business and increasing unemployment triggered hopelessness among the population. 

Unfortunately, certain positive trends launched in 2004 did not turn out to be irreversible. Today, the society is fairly alarmed over violation of civil rights and fundamental freedoms – restriction of free media, unfair judiciary, creation of criminal and repressive units at the law enforcement agencies, negligence of the property rights.

The country needs fundamental changes that will promote strengthening of security and will create hope that the country will be able to overcome the crisis.

This turning point is unavoidable.

Both people and international partners understand it well and we will have full support in this.

Georgia’s future lies in the integration into the west in the European security system. Georgia’s strategic partnership with the United States should become comprehensive and institutionally firm.

At the same time, the existing threats and new realities dictate us to take pragmatic and principled diplomatic steps towards resuming the relations with the Russian Federation.

It is impossible to change the past. But if we want to build a united, stable and fair country, we have this chance today.

We should create new opportunities for resolving problems through new political thinking.   

Solution can found through a compromise. The authorities should no longer consider that a different opinion is an expression of enmity. We should build strategy for overcoming crisis based on recommendations given by the professionals of all generations.

We should change the philosophy of state governance; we should create strong, democratic, transparent state institutions, competitive business environment.

This change would be an expression of the Georgian people’s will and it will be peaceful [change], which will not go beyond the constitutional framework. All decent and patriotic persons will contribute to this goal regardless of whether they are in the government, opposition, in the politics or outside the politics. We will make a new choice jointly, patiently and firmly.

With this goal and belief in mind, I have started consultations with representatives of our society and political forces in order to use our experience for the purpose of consolidation of the people for achieving unifications, security, stability and well being of the country.

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