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Georgian opposition leader Burdzhanadze visits Moscow

© RIA Novosti . David Chizanshvili / Go to the photo bankNino Burjanadze
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Nino Burdzhanadze, a leading Georgian opposition figure, has flown to Moscow to seek to improve ties broken off after the August 2008 war between Russia and Georgia, a Georgian news agency reported on Wednesday.

Nino Burdzhanadze, a leading Georgian opposition figure, has flown to Moscow to seek to improve ties broken off after the August 2008 war between Russia and Georgia, a Georgian news agency reported on Wednesday.

Novosti-Georgia said the former parliamentary speaker - a key ally of Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili in the 2003 Rose Revolution but now a bitter critic of the government as head of the Democratic Movement-United Georgia - flew to Moscow on Tuesday.

“Political dialogue with Russia plays a crucial role in Georgian unity,” Burdzhanadze said before leaving Tbilisi. “While Georgian opposition parties mull a joint candidate for the upcoming mayoral polls in Tbilisi, and the authorities wage smear campaigns against the opposition, I am engaged in high politics.”

“Georgian society has no idea about real Georgian-Russian relations and the ways of reconciling the two countries,” she added. After Russia, she intends to visit Europe and the United States.

Tbilisi broke off diplomatic relations with Moscow after their five-day war over South Ossetia in August 2008. Russia later recognized the independence of South Ossetia and another former Georgian province, Abkhazia, in a move described by Georgia as “annexation.”

A growing number of Georgian opposition leaders consider the political dialogue between Russia and Georgia a paramount task for Georgia’s future, and former Georgian Prime Minister Zurab Nogaideli has visited Moscow several times in recent months.

“The main obstacle to a normal political relationship between the two countries is Saakashvili’s policy. Only a change in the political situation in Tbilisi could ease the situation,” he said late last year in an interview with Rossiiskaya Gazeta.

TBILISI, March 3 (RIA Novosti)

 

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