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WASHINGTON, February 13, 3:02 /ITAR-TASS/. The issue of a possible meeting between Russian and Georgian heads of state should not be put off, Georgian State Minister for Reintegration Paat Zakareishvili, who is currently on a visit to the United States, told Itar-Tass on Wednesday.
“Once this proposal was advanced, it should be discussed,” he said. “It should not be shelved, once it is acceptable for both sides.”
The issue of a possible meeting between the leaders of the two countries was raised after Russian President Vladimir Putin’s pronouncements of February 10. When asked by a Georgian journalist in Sochi whether he planned to meet with his Georgian counterpart, Putin answered, “If he wants, why not.” On the same day, Georgian President Georgy Margvelashvili said that once there was a possibility to give a positive impetus to the Georgian-Russian relations and once both sides were ready to discuss serious subjects, “naturally, it is a good reason for consultations both inside Georgia and with Western colleagues and a good ground to think about the possibility of such a meeting.”
Later, Georgian Foreign Minister Maya Pandzhikidze reiterated the Georgian leaders’ readiness for a meeting with their Russian counterparts. “Such a meeting requires serious preparation to yield concrete results,” she said.