Acting Ambassador Brown voices strong UK support for the Geneva International Discussions as well as for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity.

This was published under the 2022 to 2024 Sunak Conservative government

Deirdre Brown MBE

Thank you Chair. The United Kingdom continues to strongly support the Geneva International Discussions (GID) and thanks the Co-Chairs for their work in the 61st round held last month. As the only international forum that brings together all sides from the conflict, the GID plays a vital role in trying to achieve a lasting resolution and address the consequences of the conflict.

The UK reaffirms its full support for Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity within its internationally recognised borders.

We welcome continued discussion on core issues such as the non-use of force and international security arrangements and we encourage further efforts to make tangible progress on these issues. As such we once again call upon the Russian Federation to immediately fulfil its obligation under the ceasefire agreement to withdraw its forces to pre-conflict positions and cease all borderisation tactics.

The UK does not recognise the so-called parliamentary elections that took place in the breakaway region of South Ossetia on 9 June. We also note with concern the illegal opening of Russian presidential election polling stations in Abkhazia and South Ossetia. Both were taken forward without the consent of the sovereign Georgian Government.

We also welcome the positive discussions on humanitarian issues including on documentation for crossings, detentions, missing persons and health issues. However, we regret that important issues including of internally displaced persons and refugees were once again not discussed due to a walkout by Abkhaz, South Ossetian and Russian participants. Walkouts undermine the GID. Progress on the Geneva process must include movement on these key issues.

We continue to call for immediate and unimpeded access to Georgia’s breakaway regions for international and regional human rights mechanisms to fully implement their mandates. We are seriously concerned about the enduring human rights violations committed therein, as reported by the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights, and we echo his calls for accountability.

The UK expresses continued support for the Incident Prevention and Response Mechanisms (IPRM). We express our great concern over the lengthy suspension of the Gali IPRM and urge its resumption without further delay or pre-conditions, in line with the ground rules.

The UK looks forward to the next GID meeting later this year. Thank you.

Published 5 July 2024