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TBILISI, December 17. /TASS/. Georgia’s Prime Minister Irakly Garibashvili has called Russian President Vladimir Putin’s remarks about Russia’s readiness to lift visa requirements for Georgia as "a step in the right direction."
"I carefully considered today’s statement of the president of the Russian Federation that the country will probably lift visa requirements for Georgian nationals," Garibashvili said in a statement released on Thursday. "I think it will be a step in the right direction."
Despite the divisions, Georgia will pursue a pragmatic policy aimed at re-establishing relations with Russia, he went on to say.
"Despite the divisions, including over causes and consequences of the 2008 war, between Georgia and Russia, we have managed to move ahead in resuming and enhancing cooperation in trade and transport and in the humanitarian sphere as well over the past three years," Garibashvili said.
"Georgia is ready to keep pursuing a pragmatic policy and expects a similar approach from Russia," he added.
Earlier in the day, Putin said that Russia was ready to re-establish relations with Georgia and to lift the visa regime.
"As for the visa regime, yes, we think we are ready to lift it," he told an annual news conference.