U.S. Participation in the Geneva International Discussions on the Conflict in Georgia
December 8, 2021
During the December 7-8 55th round of the Geneva International Discussions (GID), the United States welcomed the continued commitment of the participants to seeking peaceful conflict resolution and improving the lives of people in conflict-affected areas through participation in the Geneva process. U.S. participants thanked the Co-Chairs and the GID Secretariat for their ongoing efforts to maintain dialogue in the face of the global pandemic, and to seek new approaches to deepen cooperation in the format.
The United States welcomed participants’ active discussion in sideline meetings on freedom of movement and medical cooperation, and expressed deep support for life-saving cooperation between many GID participants to combat the effects of COVID-19. The United States urged all GID participants to work together to ensure all residents of conflict-affected areas have access to COVID-19 vaccines and other important medical treatments. U.S. participants also urged all GID participants to ensure residents of conflict-affected areas are able to visit relatives, engage in peaceful economic activities, and otherwise move freely without fear of detention or arbitrary punishment, and with access to documentation that will allow them to return to their homes.
The United States welcomed ongoing meetings of the Ergneti Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM), and also welcomed signs that the Gali IPRM may resume in the near future. They urged participants to make full use of both IPRMs to ensure participants have a standing forum to resolve ground-level issues in a timely manner and prevent escalation of disagreements. U.S. participants welcomed signs of progress on resolving missing persons cases and urged GID participants to redouble their work in this area. The United States urged further dialogue on human and comprehensive security to identify the needs of all people affected by this conflict as a critical step in effective conflict resolution.
The United States regretted the lack of progress in implementation of the 2008 ceasefire agreement, which remains unfulfilled. In particular, U.S. participants highlighted withdrawal of troops to pre-conflict positions and facilitation of unfettered access for humanitarian organizations as critical steps to improve the lives of people on the ground and demonstrate good faith interest in long-term resolution of this conflict.
The United States regrets it was not possible to discuss all items on the agenda due to a walk-out by participants from the Russian Federation and de facto authorities.
The United States reiterates its strong support for Georgia’s sovereignty, independence, and territorial integrity within its internationally-recognized borders.