MOSCOW, May 21. /TASS/. Issues of normalization of Russian-Georgian relations will be in focus of another meeting between Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin and Georgian prime minister’s special envoy for relations with Russia Zurab Abashidze in Prague on May 24, the Russian foreign ministry said on Monday.
"It is planned to continue discussion of practical aspects of the normalization of Russian-Georgian relations," the ministry said.
Tbilisi severed diplomatic relations with Moscow on September 2, 2008 after Russia had recognized Abkhazia’s and South Ossetia’s independence. The Georgian foreign ministry said back then it would maintain only consular relations with Russia. A section of Russian interests employing Russian diplomats has been operating at the Swiss embassy in Tbilisi since March 2009, and a similar Georgian section has been operating under the Swiss embassy in Moscow.
In November 2012, Georgia’s the then Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili established an office of prime minister’s special envoy for relations with Russia and appointed diplomat Zurab Abarshidze, Georgia’s former ambassador to Russia in 2000-2004, to that post. On December 14, 2012, Abashidze’s first meeting with Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin took place in a Geneva suburb. It resumed direct dialogue between the two countries officials suspended after the 2008 developments. Further meetings were held in Prague, with the latest one taking place on January 31, 2018. Such meetings typically focus on issues of cooperation in the areas of trade, economy, transport and culture.