Remarks by Nikolai Patrushev, secretary of Russia’s National Security Council, suggesting on possible Georgian link to Moscow metro bombings were made for internal consumption, Temur Iakobashvili, the Georgian state minister for reintegration, said on March 31.
“The Georgian authorities have always condemned, condemn and will always condemn terrorism even if it takes place in our adversary’s camp. We hope, that instead of pointing fingers, Russians will really investigate and find out who stands behind these terrorist acts [in Moscow],” he said.
“If something points on Georgia, let them [Russians] come and tell us and we are ready to cooperate,” he told Rustavi 2 television station. “North Caucasus is not a problem of only Russia, it is a problem for us too, as we do not want reoccurrence of Pankisi case or a large scale operation [in North Caucasus], which may trigger influx of refugees into Georgia from North Caucasus.”
He said that there was “nothing surprise” that Patrushev made such statement.
“Surprise was that he was late to make such statement,” Iakobashvili said.
“Unfortunately, it became a trend in Russia – Jewization of Georgians – wherein if previously Jews were to blame for everything in Russia, now Georgians are to be blamed for everything,” he added.
Iakobashvili also said that while Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov suggested that militants operating in Afghanistan might have helped organize the Moscow attacks, Patrushev was speaking about possibility of Georgian link.
“Knowing that Afghanistan is a problem for the West, Lavrov is making this statement for the Western and in general for international [consumption], while Patrushev’s statement is probably more for the internal consumption; his [Patrushev’s] statement echoes anti-Georgian hysteria in Russia,” Iakobashvili said.