The Ministry of foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation drew attention to the decision of the Georgian authorities to blacklist the former mayor of Moscow Yuri Luzhkov due to the fact that he is repeatedly in violation of Georgian legislation have visited Abkhazia and South Ossetia which in Tbilisi consider as occupied territories.

In Moscow pointed to “systematic provocations that undermine the process of improvement of relations with Russia” by official Tbilisi. “To rationalize such behavior is difficult because of the Russian-Georgian normalization brings tangible benefits to the economy and citizens of Georgia”, – stressed in the foreign Ministry.

“Anyway, the Russian foreign Ministry is compelled to once again draw the attention of Russian citizens to the need to carefully weigh the risks associated with travel to Georgia… it should be noted that in the absence of diplomatic relations, broken by the Georgian side, the section of Russian interests at the Swiss Embassy in Tbilisi has rather limited possibilities to protect citizens from the tyranny,” – reminded the Agency.

“Luzhkov local authorities for understandable reasons decided not to actually apply sanctions “Law on occupied territories” and declared “the verdict” after he left the “hospitable Georgia.” However, in recent years there have been, unfortunately, other cases Russian citizens in a similar situation was repeatedly subjected to fines and even imprisonment,” – said the Russian foreign Ministry.

On 11 may, the Deputy head of the Georgian Ministry of internal Affairs Shalva Khutsishvili said that Georgia will make a black list of Luzhkov and the former mayor of Moscow will not be able to enter the territory of the country. In early may, Luzhkov with spouse Elena Baturina has arrived to Georgia, despite the fact that earlier it was repeatedly visited Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

As explained Khutsishvili, this happened because Luzhkov has still not appeared in the black list. The guards could not let the ex-mayor in the country, as his passport was missing notes about the visit to Abkhazia or South Ossetia. “The fact that Luzhkov allowed to enter Georgia due to his absence in the black list. We will make it to this list, and in the future he will not be able to come to Georgia,” – said Deputy interior Minister.

Luzhkov believes Georgia’s intention to submit it to the blacklist irrational and incomprehensible decision and also not relevant to the trend in the development of relations between the two countries and Georgia’s desire to develop tourism with Russia.

“Typically decisions of this kind arise after some action that is directed against interests of Georgia or some other country. In this case, I visited Georgia as a tourist, a tour group, our trip was decorated using Georgian travel Agency”, – said the former mayor.

We will remind, Russia has recognized the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia following the military conflict with Georgia in August 2008. The example of Russia was followed by only Nicaragua and Venezuela and the tiny island state of Nauru and Tuvalu. For the remaining countries the two breakaway Republic remain part of Georgia. Currently, Russian citizens can enter the territory of both republics by the internal passports of the Russian Federation, and point of entry they are placed.

The foreign Ministry warned Russians against traveling to Georgia after the decision of the Tbilisi enable Luzhkov in the black list 16.05.2017

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