We remain committed to normalizing Russian-Georgian relations, overcoming differences, restoring and developing bilateral ties - all this in the interests of the peoples of our two countries, but such a process must be bilateral, answered the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Russia, when asked by the media about the plan to restore air traffic between Russia and Georgia.
Question: Flights between Russia and Georgia were suspended in 2019 following the well-known events that took place in Tbilisi that summer. Nevertheless, Russian officials pointed out on several occasions in 2021 that the ban was temporary and could be lifted. When can this happen, if the pandemic restrictions are disregarded? Are we losing contact with the Georgian people, considering that public diplomacy is practically not working during the ban?
Answer: This issue has been addressed in many of our public comments. Restrictions imposed on the Russian carriers to deliver Russian citizens to Georgia are temporary. We have set forth the conditions for lifting them many times. The Georgian party is well aware of them. They include stabilisation in Georgia, an end to the Russophobic campaign in Georgia, and removing threats to the safety of our citizens. We also need to take the sanitary and epidemiological circumstances into account.
Russia had to adopt these restrictions in response to the provocation staged by Georgian radicals. At the same time, we remain committed to normalising Russian-Georgian relations, overcoming differences, and restoring and strengthening bilateral ties, all of which will meet the interests of our peoples. But this process must be a two-way street. We hope that the Georgian authorities will draw conclusions from past events and will adopt a more balanced policy towards Russia.