×
Enjoying ad-free content?
Since July 1, 2024, we have disabled all ads to improve your reading experience.
This commitment costs us $10,000 a month. Your support can help us fill the gap.
Support us
Our journalism is banned in Russia. We need your help to keep providing you with the truth.

Russians Won’t Need Visa To Enter Georgia Anymore

TBILISI, Georgia — Georgia will abolish visas for Russians in an effort to attract more investment, President Mikheil Saakashvili said Tuesday.

The offer is a rare gesture of goodwill between the former Soviet republics.

The Kremlin has refused to have any contact with Saakashvili since Russia crushed an assault by Georgia's U.S.-trained military in the Russian-backed rebel region of South Ossetia in August 2008.

In his annual address to parliament Tuesday, Saakashvili proposed unilaterally dropping the visa requirement.

There was no immediate comment from Moscow, but Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said last year that Russia has no intention of dropping its visa requirement.

"It's necessary that every Russian businessman knows that he can come to Georgia, spend money, take money out, do business," Saakashvili said. "A more convenient regime for this will be created." Georgia and Russia broke off diplomatic relations after Russia recognized the independence of two Georgian separatist regions that split off after the five-day war.

Saakashvili said Georgia's decision not to block Russia's entry into the World Trade Organization showed that Tbilisi wanted to improve ties with its former imperial ruler.

"Let all Russian businessmen know that Georgia is as attractive a country for them as any other," he said, adding that Georgia's aspirations to join NATO and the European Union remained firmly in place.

However, Vladimir Putin's expected victory in Russia's March 4 presidential election is unlikely to usher in an improvement in ties with Georgia.

(Reuters, AP)

… we have a small favor to ask. As you may have heard, The Moscow Times, an independent news source for over 30 years, has been unjustly branded as a "foreign agent" by the Russian government. This blatant attempt to silence our voice is a direct assault on the integrity of journalism and the values we hold dear.

We, the journalists of The Moscow Times, refuse to be silenced. Our commitment to providing accurate and unbiased reporting on Russia remains unshaken. But we need your help to continue our critical mission.

Your support, no matter how small, makes a world of difference. If you can, please support us monthly starting from just $2. It's quick to set up, and you can be confident that you're making a significant impact every month by supporting open, independent journalism. Thank you.

Once
Monthly
Annual
Continue
paiment methods
Not ready to support today?
Remind me later.

Read more