Georgian premier sees no grounds to launch direct talks with Russian leadership

Georgian Prime Minister Irakli Garibashvili believes that the conditions are not yet ripe for launching direct talks with the Russian leadership.

"You know that we have the Geneva format of talks [with Russia]. We have no direct contacts on political issues. The only format that exists is the Karasin-Abashidze format, limited to trade, economic and cultural issues only. I think that good preparations and comprehension are required for attempts to organize direct contacts. It should be a result-oriented meeting, not a meeting just for the sake of a meeting," he told Georgia’s Channel One.

Commenting on the possibility of a meeting with top Russian state officials, the premier said that every country, including Georgia, must be guided by its national interests in such matters.

"We all understand very well that any normal functioning state acts - and is obliged to act - in line with its national interests. Naturally, we have our own interests, while our neighbors have their own. That is why I think that a meeting of this kind requires thorough preparations," he said.

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