VIENNA, June 4 (RIA Novosti) - A Russian deputy foreign minister called Thursday on Georgia's political elite to "moderate their geopolitical ambitions and start gradually normalizing relations with neighbors."
"Ultimately, this is what will give Tbilisi the opportunity to take its deserved place in regional politics," Grigory Karasin said Thursday at a session of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe.
"We all face the choice - continuing political confrontation with the illusionary aim of a forceful return of lost nations and territories, or a reasonable search for solutions acceptable to everyone, which are strengthening and not frustrating stability and trust," he said.
"To make the right choice we need as never before responsibility and realism," Karasin said, going on to speak out against the rearmament of Georgia's armed forces and assistance in restoring military infrastructure.
Russia recognized South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states after last August's five-day war with Georgia, which launched a military offensive on South Ossetia in an attempt to bring it back under central control.
President Dmitry Medvedev said that the move was "the only way to protect people's lives." Western powers called the decision unacceptable.
The republics split from Georgia in bloody post-Soviet conflicts, and most residents have been Russian passport holders for many years.