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11 août 2008 - Géorgie - Media stakeout - M. Jean-Pierre Lacroix

Commentaires informels de M. Jean-Pierre Lacroix, chargé d’affaires a.i.

Situation en Géorgie : Stake out de Jean-Pierre Lacroix, Chargé d’Affaires a.i., à l’issue du débat privé du Conseil de sécurité

Good afternoon,

We had another debate in the Council today. I think it highlighted that the situation remains very very serious and very worrying.I don’t want to dwell on the gravity of the situation.

What I would like to tell you is that France, as President of the European Union, is making maximum efforts to try and help to find a solution to this situation. You know that the Minister for Foreign Affairs Bernard Kouchner, has been in Tbilissi, discussing with the Georgian authorities. He is now in Moscow, we are told he arrived in Moscow, and will be discussing with his Russian counterpart. It is now confirmed that our President will also go to Moscow tomorrow. And therefore there is a maximum, a hundred percent mobilization of the French authorities, together with other partners such as the OSCE in particular.

Our aim is to put an end to the violence. You know that the French President has laid out the elements of a plan to reach a solution. It is a simple plan, it is common sense. You are familiar with the elements of that plan : immediate cessation of hostilities ; return of Russian and Georgian forces to the positions that they were occupying prior to the outbreak of violence ; respect for sovereignty, territorial integrity and independence of Georgia ; and the possibility of international help to contribute to the implementation of a solution.

This is what we are discussing with both Georgia and Russia. We had a favourable reaction from the Georgian side. We hope that there will be equally a responsible, favourable reaction from the Russian side.

As far as the Security Council is concerned, we want it to be part of that effort. The Security Council is not operating in a vacuum. In our view it should operate as a positive contributor to the action that we are undertaking. And this is very much the spirit in which I have indicated in the discussion that we will circulate the draft resolution shortly to the members of the council. It’s a very simple and straightforward resolution. It basically contains the very same elements that are in the plan outlined by President Sarkozy.

We do not think the Council is a place for confrontation. We want to go beyond that. We want to turn the energy and the weight and the credibility of the Council into a positive force, so that it can help towards a solution. This is our only aim : where we are fully, completely mobilized to achieve a solution in this very worrying situation.

Mr Ambassador ; can these goals be reached outside the UNSC, by the OSCE or by the EU, or does it need to be at the Security Council ?

I think that what we have today is the involvement of the French authorities at the highest level : a hundred per cent mobilization. It has to be in synergy. Every single body, every single organization, State, has to be part of that, has to support that. The Council has a special responsibility from the Charter. It should exert that responsibility, and that is why we are taking that initiative of the Council.

When are you planning to formally introduce the text ?

We will be consulting with the members of the Council. We will circulate the draft to the members of the Council tonight and then, as I said, we will work with our partners of the Council. As I said, we are not operating in a vacuum, but we will be, of course, following very, very closely the evolution of the very intensive diplomatic efforts.
It is one effort in different places, the center of what we are doing is what President Sarkozy and Mr Kouchner are doing at the moment.

You said that the draft resolution asks to come back to the status quo ante of August. Does that apply to all parties ?

What we are looking at is the return to the status quo ante. That is exactly what we are looking at.

Did you discuss with the Russian the political agreement that has been already signed by the Georgians ?

I think that ambassador Churkin is better suited than me to answer questions about the Russian position. We are in very intensive consultations with the Russians. They have their position. We are coming in good faith, with non-controversial, consensual efforts to bring peace. Thank you./.

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