- Abkhazia by John Colarusso
- The Stalin-Beria Terror in Abkhazia, 1936-1953, by Stephen D. Shenfield
- The International Legal Status of the Republic of Abkhazia In the Light of International Law, by Viacheslav Chirikba
- Why Can Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili Not Emulate Willi Brandt? by Liz Fuller
- Commentary on the Resolution of the European Parliament for Georgia, 17 November 2011
- Kosovo or Abkhazia: Contrasts and Comparisons
- International law and the Russian “occupation” of Abkhazia and South Ossetia, by Richard Berge
- 'Absence of Will': A commentary, prepared by Metin Sönmez
- Documents from the KGB archive in Sukhum. Abkhazia in the Stalin years, by Rachel Clogg
- On the 20th anniversary of the start of Georgia’s war against Abkhazia, by Stanislav Lakoba
- Military Aspects of the War. The Battle for Gagra (The Turning-point), by Dodge Billingsley
- Alleged human rights violations during the conflict in Abkhazia | Amnesty International, 1993
- A reply to Paul Henze’s views on Georgia, by George Hewitt - February 1993
- Ossetia-Georgia-Russia-U.S.A. Towards a Second Cold War?, by Noam Chomsky
- Thinking the Unthinkable: What if Georgia and the West Were to Recognize Abkhazia and South Ossetia? by Paul Goble
- A Chance to Join the World, by Neal Ascherson
- Hitler calls on Georgians to win back Abkhazia
- Opinion: Hottentot morality - Uri Avnery
- Abkhazia: A Broken Paradise, by Georgi Derluguian
- Baron Pyotr Karlovich Uslar: Inventor of the First Abkhaz Alphabet, by Stephen D. Shenfield
- Lesson to the West: Abkhazian independence is a fact, by Inal Khashig
- Abkhazia, from conflict to statehood, by George Hewitt
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|The engagement issue, by Oksana Antonenko|
|Articles - Analysis|
|Friday, 29 October 2010 07:41|
The international community is keen not to isolate Abkhazia and South Ossetia, but how successful can new policies of engagement be?
IISS - The International Institute for Strategic Studies | Caucasus Security Insight
After the August 2008 war, the European Union's successful intervention to achieve a ceasefire agreement reinforced the need for further engagement in order to secure its full implementation. Both the EU and Georgia have adamantly refused to accept Russia's recognition of the declared independence of South Ossetia and Abkhazia; yet, within the past year both the EU and Georgia have aimed to work in developing effective instruments to deal with the rapid isolation of the two territories.
According to the EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus, Peter Semneby, the need for an EU 'engagement without recognition' strategy is premised on the requirement that a 'European footprint' is established which allows for regular contact to be established along the conflict lines. In May 2010, the EU approved a new strategy for the South Caucasus which stressed EU support for Georgia's 'territorial integrity' as well as EU support for Georgia's State Strategy on engagement through cooperation, adopted on 27 January 2010.
The international community largely welcomed Georgia's conciliatory stance as it was seen as a welcome change from its previous overtures such as the 'Law on Occupied Territories' that sought to deter the international community from recognising the breakaway territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia (largely through the restriction of commercial and diplomatic contact with the two regions).
This move away from a policy of 'non-engagement and non-recognition' to a policy of 'engagement without recognition' has been justified by both the EU and Georgia as a means towards achieving a 'human-centric' strategy that deals with people-to-people contacts, socio-economic assistance and basic humanitarian assistance, rejecting the pursuit of a military solution.
The endorsed strategy for engagement was followed in July 2010 by an Action Plan for Engagement which centres around seven instruments the government offers to put into place to achieve the goals of the strategy.
The Georgian state strategy and its subsequent Action Plan have been officially welcomed by the EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Catherine Ashton. Neither Catherine Ashton's support for Georgia's 'territorial integrity' nor her statement that the Action Plan should allow for a more 'permissive and enabling environment, including for international organisations and NGOs active in conflict resolution' has received support in Sukhumi and Tskhinvali.
In these circumstances, there is much room for discussing the potential pitfalls, key principles and possible synergies rooted within the 'engagement without recognition' strategies. This edition will aim to focus and address the following questions: