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EU Envoy: Trust is Missing Most of All
Civil Georgia, Tbilisi / 16 Apr.'09 / 15:50

Peter Semneby, EU’s special representative for South Caucasus, said absence of trust between the authorities and the opposition was hindering launch of talks.

“Our preference and the preference of all Georgia’s friends [is to] have a political process, but that would require the trust,” Semneby told journalist after series of separate meetings with some opposition leaders on April 16.

“This is, I think, what is missing most of all – trust between the sides. Once that trust starts to be reestablished, then I think there are possibilities for a dialogue to take place, a dialogue that this country so dearly needs,” he said.

The EU diplomat said that he hoped holidays, over this weekend, when the Orthodox Christians mark Easter, would be time not only “to take a rest from the confrontation” but to also to reflect upon by all sides on how to move forward and “how to make sure that political issues – constitution and electoral and so on, can be best addressed.”

“This is a matter of future of the country; the country needs to come together and have a common view on how it is governed,” he said. “It is good thing that we have few days of peace and rest in front of us.”

He also said that EU had information about allegations of attacks on opposition activists and supporters “from various sources.”

“Whether it is directly related to the political confrontation or whether it is a sign of increasing criminality, because the police have been absent, they have been busy with other things – I don’t really know. Nevertheless, cases of this kind are extremely serious and they need to be investigated; and one also needs to look into how cases of this kind can be prevented,” Semneby said.

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