RESOLUTION BY THE PARLIAMENT OF GEORGIA on Measures for Settlement the Critical Situation Evoked by the Unlawful Declaration to Schedule Elections Made by the Abkhaz Separatist Regime

The recent declaration to hold elections during the process of conflict settlement in Abkhazia has aggravated the process of the political settlement of the conflict in Abkhazia.

The efforts of the Georgian Government to peacefully settle the Abkhaz conflict based on the principles of the territorial integrity of Georgia have been ignored. These principles include granting autonomous status to Abkhazia in accordance of the internationally recognized standards.

Since June of 1994, the peacekeeping forces of the C.I.S, which are composed from Russian military personnel, have not carried out their function as determined by their mandate - the safe and organized return of refugees to their native dwellings - which has contributed to the notion that the separatists are above the law. The above mentioned conditions called forth the recent declaration on illegal elections, which is particularly alarming while the peacekeeping forces are dislocated along the Enguri River.

Holding elections by the separatist regime will lead to the dissolution of the peacekeeping mission, as by its nature, a peacekeeping mission cannot legitimize ethnic cleansing nor the forces within Abkhazia who organized the genocide of the indigenous population. Any precedent that may be set whereby ethnic cleansing works to promote the conduct of elections, is a threat to international peace and security, causes disorder, and contradicts the imperatives of the international law. Democratic, law-based nations should express their attitude towards these events and recognize such elections unlawful.

The crisis in the process of settlement of the Abkhaz conflict is integrally linked to Russian-Georgian relations and their future prospective.

An evaluation of the current lack of a legal basis for deployment of the Russian military bases on the territory of Georgia is necessary.

The similar situation exists with regard to the joint-defense of State borders. Discussion of already signed military agreements can only take place following the de facto restoration of the State jurisdiction over the entire territory of Georgia.

There is no final definition of policy towards Russian-Georgian economic cooperation.

It is incomprehensible that the agreement, “On Friendship, Neighborliness and Cooperation between Georgia and the Russian Federation” ratified on 17 January 1996 by the Parliament of Georgia, which determines the main principles of strategic cooperation between Georgia and Russia has not yet been ratified by the supreme legislative body of Russia.

An unhealthy situation exists due to the fact that Russia has not extradited suspects involved in the organization of the terrorist act of 19 August 1995 against the Head of State.

The Parliament of Georgia reaffirms its readiness to support a peaceful resolution of the conflict and declares its intent to take urgent measures for the settlement of this crisis. At the same time the Parliament of Georgia places special stress on the urgent settlement of outstanding problems regarding the bilateral relations between Georgia and Russia, which is a precondition for continued development of friendship and strategic cooperation.

Taking into consideration the resolution indicated above and 26 September 1996 resolution of the Supreme Council of Abkhazia “On Conflict Settlement in Abkhazia and On-going Tasks”, the Parliament of Georgia resolves:

1. To consider illegal the decision made by separatists and their supporters of the occupied territory on holding elections on 23 November, and any of their forthwith results to be annulled, as they breach the Constitution of Georgia, the principles and norms of international law, human rights and freedom.

2. To ask to the President of Georgia for establishment of a Special State Delegation responsible for the evaluation of the current status of Russian-Georgian bilateral relations and to elaborate the mechanisms in order to remove the outstanding problems.

3. Before December 10 the above mentioned delegation shall submit preliminary proposals regarding negotiations with the Russian officials and further regulation to be held between Georgia and Russia to be held covering regulation of Russian-Georgian relations, extension of the mandate of peacekeeping forces in the conflict zone, existence of Russian military bases on the territory of Georgia, and future joint-defense of Georgian state borders.

4. Both sides shall meet on an annual basis to ratify relevant military agreements, regardless the term of their validity, in order to preserve their legal standing and prolong the term.

5. The issue on joint defense of Georgian State borders shall be coordinated with the issue of Russian-Georgian border defense along the Psou River and the entire territory of the Abkhaz Autonomous Republic, and also with the implementation of the resolutions agreed upon at the Moscow meeting of CIS Heads of States on 19 January 1996 and with adequate participation of Georgian border forces in this process.

6. Discussion of the military agreements mentioned in paragraph 4 of this resolution at the Parliament of Georgia should be coordinated with the final settlement of the conflict in Abkhazia.

7. To ask the President of Georgia for the delivery of comprehensive information to the C.I.S. Heads of States on peacekeeping operations under the aegis of the C.I.S. and conditions pertaining to the fulfillment of resolutions adopted at the Moscow Summit 19 January 1996.

8. Positively view extending the activity of the UN, European, and other international organizations towards political negotiations dealing with the conflict in Abkhazia.

To ask the UN Mission, Governments representing the “Friends of Georgia” for playing a role of a mediator in order to involve their special representatives in the on-going negotiations.

9. The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia shall start the consultations on the issues indicated in parag. 7 and 8, and submit monthly information to the Parliament of Georgia.

10. The Ministry of Defense, Security Ministry, and the Ministry of Internal Affairs shall work out measures to maintain current cease-fire conditions in the event that peacekeeping forces leave the conflict zone; at the same time to work out the mechanisms to replace existing peacekeeping contingents by another international peacekeeping force.

11. The Parliament of Georgia shall be informed about the fulfillment of this resolution on a regular basis.

The Deputy Chairman of the Parliament of Georgia Eduard Surmanidze

2 October 1996

(Newspaper “Sakartvelos Respublika”, # 200, 4 October 1996)