Georgia will react “adequately” if there is a “welcoming” of leaders of breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia at the Winter Olympic Games in Sochi, Georgian PM Irakli Garibashvili said in an interview with BBC, which was recorded on February 3 in Brussels.
Asked if Georgia boycotts the Sochi Games if there is some kind of recognition of Abkhazia and South Ossetia during the Olympics, Garibashvili responded: “I don’t want to believe that we gonna have some surprises such as the welcoming of the so called Abkhazian and South Ossetian authorities, but if there are such surprises of course we will react adequately.”
Late afternoon on February 3, breakaway South Ossetia said its leader had been invited by the Russian President to attend the opening ceremony of the Sochi Olympic Games.
Georgian Foreign Minister, Maia Panjikidze said on February 4 that Tbilisi was trying to verify the report through official channels.
Asked on this report on February 4, PM Garibashvili at first told journalists resolutely that it was “incorrect information” and that “the Russian Foreign Ministry made an explanation that they are not going to make an official invitation”; but immediately after saying that he added: “I do not know, let’s wait anyway; we should not hurry; we will act adequately as [situation] develops.”
No Georgian government member will be attending the Sochi Games. Part of the Georgian delegation, among them officials from the Georgian National Olympic Committee, left for Sochi on February 4.
The Georgian team at the Sochi Olympic Games will include four athletes: three Alpine skiers – Nino Tsiklauri; Iason Abramishvili; Alexi Beniaidze, and a figure skater Elene Gedevanishvili, who competed at the 2006 and 2010 Winter Olympic Games.