14:22 GMT +316 February 2019
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    Democratic Choice Commonwealth not counter-weight to CIS

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    KIEV, August 18 (RIA Novosti) - The Democratic Choice Commonwealth-a new Eurasian alliance proposed by the leaders of Ukraine and Georgia-is not intended as a counterweight to the Russia-dominated Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), Ukrainian Foreign Minister Boris Tarasyuk told a news briefing Thursday.

    He said, however, that in the years of its existence, the CIS has failed to solve a number of problems of mutual concern, prompting its member states to opt for smaller alliances-both bilateral ones, like the Russia-Belarus Union, and multilateral, like the GUAM (Georgia, Ukraine, Azerbaijan and Moldova), the Collective Security Treaty Organization (Russia, Belarus, Armenia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan), and the Euro-Asian Economic Community, or EuroAsEC (Russia, Belarus, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan and Tajikistan).

    In a joint statement signed August 13, Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko and his Georgian counterpart, Mikheil Saakashvili, announced their intention to set up a new alliance of Soviet-republics-turned-sovereign-democracies.

    The leaders of Georgia and Ukraine are hopeful the Democratic Choice Commonwealth will become a powerful instrument for member nations to fight human rights abuses, confrontationism and long-standing conflicts, notably with breakaway regions, such as Abkhazia and South Ossetia, and the self-proclaimed Transnister Republic.