OF THE SEVENTH SESSION OF THE COORDINATING COUNCIL OF THE GEORGIAN ABKHAZ SIDES
The seventh session of the Coordination Council
created pursuant to Final Statement of the Georgian and Abkhazian Sides (on
17-19 November 1997), took place on February 11,
The Georgian Side was represented by a delegation
under the leadership of Mr. Vazha Lordkipanidze.
The Abkhaz Side was represented by a delegation
under the leadership of Mr.Sergey Bagapsh.
Opening the session, the Special Representative of
the UN Secretary General pointed out that that bilateral contacts, that took
place between the Georgian and Abkhazian Sides in the aftermath of the previous
session of the Council, contributed to the cause of prevention of resumption of
hostilities and represent the most effective tools in terms of achieving
political progress in the negotiation process.
According to him, although agreements on principal
issues like not resorting to military force, return of refugees and economic
problems have not been reached, the existing difference on these issues are not
insurmountable. The Special Representative called upon the Sides to resume the
dialogue on all levels.
Evaluating the situation in the conflict zone as
tense and unstable, Mr. Liviu Botta pointed out certain positive developments
taking place after the previous session of the Coordination Council in terms of
removing the tension in the
Referring to the issue of return of refugees, the
Special Representative of the UN Secretary General confirmed the right of
refugees and internally displaced persons to return to their places of
permanent residence. Welcoming these recent initiatives relating to return of
refugees and internally displaced persons to the Gali region within old administrative
borders, he pointed out that in order to make sure that such initiatives are of
practical importance, the return of refugees should be carried out in the
conditions of security and with full respect for the relevant principles of the
international law. The International community will render all the necessary
assistance, provided the Sides reach an agreement on return of refugees and
internally displaced persons.
The adopted agenda included the following issues:
1. Issues of sustainable non resumption of
hostilities and security-related issues;
2. Refugees and internally displaced persons;
3. Economic and social problems.
Representatives of the Sides made statements.
Mr. Taric Gazi –Chief UNOMIG Military observer, General-Major
Sergey Korobko-Commander of the CIS Peacekeeping forces, Mr. Ekber Memenjiogly
– representative of the UNHCR in Georgia, and Mr. Marco Borsotti – UNDP
Coordinating Council decided:
the framework of two weeks to convene, under the chairmanship of the Chief
UNOMIG Military Observer, a meeting between the Parties to the conflict,
UNOMIG, CIS Peace Keeping Forces, in order to elaborate instruments for
functioning of the Group on investigation and prevention of terrorist acts and
other manifestations of violations of provisions of the Moscow Agreement of 14
2. The Sides, together with representatives of
UNOMIG and CIS Peace-keeping forces, shall work out and implement, until the
end of February 1999, concrete steps aimed at securing non-resumption of
hostilities any elimination of any threat of clashes, and separation of forces
along the cease-fire line.
3. The representatives of law-enforcement bodies
will analyze the available to them information on subversive actions that may
lead to resumption of hostilities.
4. To continue bilateral negotiations on creation
of mechanisms for return of refugees and internally displaced persons to the
Gali region (within old administrative borders).
5. During the next Session of the Coordination
Council, to hear information of Georgian and Abkhaz co-chairs of the Commission
on Search for Missing Servicemen of the Abkhaz conflict in 1992-93.
(Abkhaz Issue in Official Documents, Legislative
and Executive organs of Georgia, International Organizations, 1989-1999, part
II, 1995-1999; authors: Vakhtang Kholbaia, Teimuraz Chakhrakia, Rafiel
Gelantia, David Latsuzbaia, Tb., 2000, p. 279-280/in Georgan)