We did not cut diplomatic relations with Georgia, this was the initiative of the Saakashvili regime, said Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov in an interview with the Russian media when he answered the question whether he sees the possibility of restoring diplomatic relations with Georgia in the near future.
"We did not cut diplomatic relations with Georgia, this was the initiative of the Saakashvili regime, which, with the encouragement of the USA, raised its hand against its own citizens, the Ossetians, raised its hand against the peacekeepers, and when it received a worthy response, it began to compensate for its complete political and military failure with anti-Russian actions. We have never had negative attitude towards the Georgian people, we really love the Georgian people, and in the history of Russia and the history of the Soviet Union, in the history of our art, culture and science, Georgians have a special place," Lavrov said.
According to him, Russia canceled the visa regime for Georgian citizens and restored direct flights with Georgia, which makes Georgia-Russia relations much more comfortable.
"When we saw that the current government of Tbilisi is interested in normalizing relations, even for the interests of ordinary people who want to communicate with each other, to visit each other, to visit our countries as tourists, to do business, we agreed with the government of Mr. Gharibashvili on the resumption of flights and the cancellation of visas regime, since the visa-free regime for Russian citizens has existed for a long time and many of our citizens have used it. But now, on the basis of reciprocity, the introduction of the visa-free regime for Georgian citizens and the establishment of air communications, of course, make our relations much more comfortable. The number of flights is increasing, expanding the geography of direct flights also increases trade turnover. Many traditional Georgian export products are very popular with us: wine, Borjomi and many others," Lavrov said.