Georgia"s NATO relationship and Russian military aggression - these are the key issues that former US diplomat Matthew Bryza has spoken to in an interview with the Georgian Institute for Security Policy.
Bryza shares Rasmussen"s idea and thinks the plan will open Georgia"s NATO door and give it security.
“I think that Rasmussen’s idea is a great one to change the situation: it does not get the separated regions back into Georgia but it does give Georgia the security that it needs and integration into the Alliance. It’s imaginative but not unprecedented. In Cyprus, very similar things have happened, with the EU accepting the entire island of Cyprus, but suspending the EU body of law in the north. Legally all the island is part of the EU, and we’re talking about the same thing for Abkhazia and South Ossetia; technically and legally, we can consider all regions becoming part of NATO, but Article 5 would be suspended in those territories. There’s clearly a precedent for it”, - said Bryza.
He also said that in spring of 2008 they developed a plan in Washington to give Georgia a way out of the trap that Putin was trying to set: “The trap was to leave Saakashvili with no good choices: between acquiescing to Russia taking control of Abkhazia and South Ossetia or going to war with Russia. We decided we needed to come up with another plan and we designed a whole set of measures that included having EU police at Kodori Valley, a whole series of things. But in the end, the Germans, who were chairing the “friends of Georgia” group, took out any provision that might be objected to by Russia, leaving all but nothing”.
Bryza added that at the 2008 Bucharest Summit US President Bush pushed very hard for Georgia to receive MAP, but was blocked by Chancellor Merkel.