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Next round of Geneva discussions on security in Caucasus to be held on December 8-9

October 08, 2015, 2:15 UTC+3 GENEVA
The Geneva discussions involve Abkhazia, Georgia, Russia, the United States and South Ossetia
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© AP Photo/Yuri Ivaschenko

GENEVA, October 8. /TASS/. A regular round of the Geneva International Discussions on security and stability in the South Caucasus that were held in Switzerland’s Geneva were "constructive and substantive," the co-chairs from the United Nations, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) said in a press communique on Wednesday.

"The Co-Chairs were encouraged to see frank and open exchanges taking place despite persistent diverging views," the document said.

The next, 34th, round will be held in Geneva on December 8-9, 2015.

The Geneva discussions involve Abkhazia, Georgia, Russia, the United States and South Ossetia. Discussions proceed in two working groups, on security-related issues and on humanitarian matters, including the situation with displaced persons, refugees and humanitarian ties.

Participants in working group I, according to the press communique, "assessed the overall situation on the ground as relatively calm and stable." "The participants continued to exchange views on the non-use of force, threat perceptions, as well as freedom of movement. Experts met again to work on a draft joint statement by all participants on non-use of force. The participants welcomed the continued good cooperation in the meetings of the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) in Ergneti and urged for the resumption of the Gali IPRM," the document said.

Working group II discussed a number of issues related to the humanitarian situation on the ground. "Among others, they substantively discussed issues relating to multilingual education and languages of instruction in Gali schools, freedom of movement and mobility, missing persons, environmental and cultural heritage," he document said, adding that the problem of internally displaced persons had also been addressed. "In this regard, the Co-Chairs reiterated their appeal to participants to engage constructively on all agenda items in the future".

The Geneva International Discussions are held under the auspices of the United Nations, the European Union and the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. This is the only platform for dialogue between Abkhazia, South Ossetia and Georgia. This format emerged on the basis of agreements reached by the presidents of Russia and France after the development of August 2008 when Georgia committed an act of aggression against South Ossetia forcing Russia to introduce its troops in the region. Shortly after, Russia recognized independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia.

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