Russian senators ready for dialogue with Georgia

 Russian senators ready for dialogue with Georgia

Russia is interested in restoring good-neighborly, friendly relations with Georgia, and the Federation Council is ready to join this effort, Russian Federation Council chairperson Valentina Matvienko said.

Georgian parliamentarians visited the Russian State Duma on July 11, it was the first visit in the last ten years. The delegation of the State Duma deputies, in turn, plans to visit Tbilisi.

"This is a good signal," Matvienko stressed. "The Foreign Ministry is constantly engaged in dialogue and consultations, and measures are being taken to soften bilateral relations," she added.

Russian Federation Council chairperson noted that parliamentarians cannot stand aside from this process. "If such proposals are submitted to the Federation Council, we are ready to join this important diplomatic, parliamentary activity," Matvienko concluded.

The member of the Federation Council Committee for International Affairs, Igor Morozov, speaking to Vestnik Kavkaza, noted that direct inter-parliamentary talks will help clarify the political contradictions that have accumulated between Russia and Georgia over the nine years of diplomatic rupture.

"We have been talking about this for a long time. We were offered mediation between the Georgian and Russian parliamentarians, but we believe that we are fully able to agree directly, without intermediaries, how to fully restore the relations between states and societies," he said.

"It is very important that cultural, tourist, humanitarian contacts have not been interrupted for all these years. If you fly to Tbilisi or from Tbilisi to Moscow, then you see a full plane of tourists both in one and the other direction. I think that the inclusion of the Federation Council in this process will only help us to better understand each other and take steps to restore relations," senator Igor Morozov stressed.

Deputy Chairwoman of the Federation Council Committee on agricultural and food policy and environmental management, Irina Hecht, in turn, drew attention to the fact that parliamentary diplomacy currently allows to effectively build the first political ties for establishing relations.

"When we were at the OSCE Parliamentary Assembly in Tbilisi last year, we had a dinner called the Family Lunch. Georgian deputies told us that we should not blame Georgia for not loving Russia. They said that Georgia owes very much to Russia, adding that it was looking for its own way, but become dependent, including on the EU," she said.

"There is room for dialogue here. The opportunity to communicate and exchange will allow to change the stereotypes that Western media are trying to impose on Russia, including in Georgia. Establishing a parliamentary dialogue will have a beneficial effect on relations between Russia and Georgia," senator Irina Hecht concluded.