Russia’s Foreign Ministry has called on the United States to recollect imposing its own sanctions instead of condemning the measures taken by Russia against Georgia, the ministry wrote on Facebook on Saturday.
“US Charge d’Affaires in Georgia Elizabeth Rood said the other day that the measures that Russia had taken against Georgia in the sphere of flights and tourism were ‘unfair, unnecessary and disproportionate’,” the post says. “In this connection, we would like to remind Ms. Rood of what such ‘unfair, unnecessary and disproportionate’ measures are like. A wide range of countries carrying out their independent foreign policies have fallen victim to this policy of the United States (this state has already been brandishing ‘a restrictions baton’ for decades).”
US sanctions have been in effect against Russia uninterruptedly “since minimum 1974” when the Jackson-Vanik amendment became law. The amendment linked the trade benefits between the two countries to free emigration from the Soviet Union.
“It is evident that over the past 50 years, Russia has been viewed by the US establishment as an unfriendly state,” the Foreign Ministry stated underscoring that up to now, the number of US “sanctions wars” against Russia had amounted to 65.
“Instead of mentor rhetoric about the Russian measures, which protect the lives and health of Russian citizens abroad, we would like to hear from Ms. Rood about ‘the fair, necessary and proportionate’ US restrictive measures that have been imposed over decades to exert pressure on our country’s foreign policy,” the ministry pointed out.
On July 8, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decree will come into force. The June 21 decree imposes a temporary ban on flights (including commercial ones) from Russia to Georgia and back. On June 22, Russia’s Transport Ministry announced that starting from July 8, flights by Georgian airlines to Russia would be halted.
On June 20, several thousand protesters amassed near the national parliament in downtown Tbilisi, demanding the resignation of the interior minister and the parliament’s speaker, and tried to storm it. The protests were sparked by an uproar over the Russian delegation’s participation in the 26th session of the Inter-parliamentary Assembly on Orthodoxy (IAO). On June 20, IAO President Sergei Gavrilov opened the session in the Georgian parliament.
Opposition lawmakers were outraged by the fact that Gavrilov addressed the event’s participants from the parliament speaker’s seat. In protest, they did not allow the IAO session to continue and tried to storm the parliament under anti-Russian slogans.