Zurabishvili Backtracks on Previous Claims that Georgia Started the 2008 War

On Monday, independent presidential candidate Salome Zurabishvili spoke to supporters at her campaign headquarters.

Zurabishvili said that “the release of Georgia” and protecting the country’s “independence and liberty” has always been her and her family’s “primary belief, goal, and dream.”

She explained, "I wanted a European campaign with politeness, and discussions about the future, and I will do it.” She criticized her detractors who, she claimed, are fixated on the past and know nothing but Soviet practices of “lies, black PR, and threats.”

Zurabishvili asserted that she will not respond to attacks against her. “They are attacking supporters,” she said, “I have decided that it is time to finish it all. We should complete this guessing game together. My attitude toward Russia has remained unchanged for more than 60 years.” She vowed to protect Georgia, adding: “Can you tell me protection from whom? - from Russia, of course.”

Zurabishvili back-tracked on earlier, controversial statements that Georgia started the 2008 Georgia-Russia War. Members of the ruling party, Georgian Dream, vocally disagreed with her statements. Now, after Georgian Dream officially endorsed Zurabishvili for president, she said Monday, “Who started the Georgia-Russia war - is it clear that Russia did, and why? Russia invaded Georgia with tanks and military aircrafts. Georgia has never invaded Russia, never committed aggression. Who can argue it? Neither I nor any Georgian is going say that Georgia started the Russo-Georgian War.”


By Samantha Guthrie

18 September 2018 08:34