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Regular flights between Russia, Georgia may resume September 15 — deputy FM

July 09, 2014, 20:59 UTC+3 PRAGUE
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PRAGUE, July 09. /ITAR-TASS/. Regular air flights between Russia and Georgia may resume September 15, Deputy Russian Foreign Minister Grigory Karasin said Wednesday.

Karasin said a relevant decision was made after his meeting today with the Georgian prime minister’s special representative on relations with the Russian Federation Zurab Abashidze.

“Up until now, air transportation has mainly been carried out by charters. We decided to transfer them to the regular basis. Preliminarily, I can say that most likely, regular flights on the Moscow-Tbilisi-Moscow route will be the first to be resumed, and we outlined the date of September 15,” the Russian diplomat said.

Karasin did not rule out that later regular flights may also link other Russian and Georgian cities.

“We have already handed to the Georgian side our note on this issue, now we are waiting for their note in response. After that, each side will appoint its air carrier and flights will be resumed,” he said.

Russia and Georgia cut off diplomatic ties after Russia recognized as independent two Georgian breakaway republics of South Ossetia and Abkhazia. The recognition followed Georgia's attack on South Ossetia that entailed Russia's peacemaking operation in August 2008.

The Russian Foreign Ministry said Wednesday after the meeting between Karasin and Abashidze that Moscow suggested to Georgia exchanging relevant notes to restore regular flights from September 15.

During their talks, the diplomats “continued the informal dialogue started in December 2012 on normalizing the Russian-Georgian ties in spheres where real progress is possible in conditions of the absence of diplomatic relations [trade, transport, humanitarian issues],” the ministry said.

It also noted that reciprocal overland cargo transportation has been substantially boosted.

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