President: Georgia Not Ready to Stand for Damage Caused by Occupation

"Our country is not ready to simply stand for the damage caused by the occupation to human lives and to human rights," Georgian President Salome Zurabishvili said in her speech at a high-level meeting of the UN General Assembly dedicated to the 75th anniversary of the United Nations.

She noted that "the future that we want" is based on four principles:

"First, Peace. The Secretary General’s call for a global ceasefire has not been heard …yet. While seeing every day the cost of isolation in its territories occupied by Russia, Georgia is not ready to simply stand for the damage caused by the occupation to human lives and to human rights. The time has come for a fresh look, out of an intolerably frozen situation, at the opportunities that the new world paradigm opens, and to be ready to test new solutions. Peace and development are the only way forward.

"Second, a viable planet.  We all witnessed how lockdowns positively affected our environment and changed our approach, compelling us to look more thoroughly at sustainable energy transition and resource management. We as a small country think that even if our actions do not impact the global picture, we can still play an experimental role, albeit an exemplary one, for designing common strategies.

"Thirdly, an inclusive and healthy society. Coronavirus spread was a wake-up call for all. Georgia has responded to the pandemic in a timely manner and managed to minimize the impact on the vulnerable populations. This was made possible by the “triangle of trust” established between society, medical authorities and government, and through close cooperation with international actors. Trust and solidarity will be key for our societies to develop the necessary resilience for tomorrow.

"Last but not least, educated citizens in a culturally developed society.  Internet development has shown new opportunities for education, culture and creative growth, despite threats to information reliability and security. Citizens with knowledge and skills are the only key to future growth and the main resource. Tolerance, which we Georgians view as our centuries-old cultural heritage, together with intellectual and moral solidarity, are the values that have to guide us in these times of uncertainty."

"For such a future to take form, we need to respect our principles and treat the Charter and the SDG’s, not as words on paper, but as concrete goals that need political will and commitment.

"The “UN we need” is one that will inspire our citizens, create trust and bring effective leadership.

"Our future and that of our “old but young” organization is in our hands," Zurabishvili stated. 

By Ana Dumbadze 

22 September 2020 12:54