Georgia’s Foreign Minister, Grigol Vashadze, accused his Russian counterpart of breaching a deal made by Georgian and Russian negotiators not to speak to media about ongoing talks over Russia’s WTO bid.
“As you know first round of these talks was held [in Bern] on March 10. Two agreements have been reached at that meeting; the first one – to continue talks in April and the second one – the sides should not make comments for the press about the negotiations,” Vashadze said while speaking at a joint news conference with visiting OSCE chairman-in-office on March 15.
“I want to note with huge regret, that chief Russian diplomat, Mr. Lavrov, has violated an agreement few days after [the talks], which is a traditional for the Russian diplomacy. He violated the agreement with one sentence – sent us a threat and put forth preconditions. So judge yourself what a ‘wonderful’ approach the Russian diplomacy has towards achieved agreements,” Vashadze said.
Vashadze was referring to Lavrov’s March 13 remarks, when he said, that in case of a failure to agree with Tbilisi, Moscow would seek to become WTO member bypassing Georgia’s consent.
Lavrov said that Georgia's demands to deploy its customs officers at Psou and Roki in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, respectively, as a precondition for endorsing Russia's WTO bid had nothing to do with WTO-related issues
"If our Georgian counterparts persist on such a politicized position, then we will probably have to solve the issue of WTO accession in other way - without their [Georgia's] consent. There is such a possibility," Lavrov said in an interview with Moscow-based TV station, Channel 3.