Parliament Members Concerned Over Georgian-US Military Agreement

Russian Duma (lower house) deputies are concerned over the Georgian-US agreement on defence co-operation that provides for unrestricted and visa-free entry of US servicemen to Georgia. The Duma committee on the CIS affairs and contacts with compatriots have drafted a statement to be considered on April 9th, the State Duma press service reported Friday.

The draft statement on "The Agreement on Co-operation in Defence between the Governments of Georgia and the USA" reads that the State Duma deputies "consider it a act that goes contrary to good-neighbourly relations and co-operation between the Russian Federation and Georgia." "It is of great concern that at short notice of the US Armed Forces Command, American servicemen will be granted an unrestricted right for crossing the Georgian border, deploying US military hardware, transports and cargoes on Georgian territory and moving them freely," the draft statement reads.

"There is a possibility of building up forces and means of the US Armed Forces in Georgia, their unrestricted use on Georgian territory, including in Abkhazia and South Ossetia, in the interests of the US Armed Forces Command and the Georgian leadership," the document says. "The agreement could change the alignment of forces in the region and pose a threat to international security."

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