Shalva Papuashvili, the Chairman of the Parliament of Georgia, on Monday addressed concerns surrounding the residency of Russian citizens in the country amid Russia’s ongoing aggression against Ukraine, emphasizing the stable security situation and condemning what he described as a “persistent xenophobic campaign” led by domestic opposition and affiliated non-governmental organizations.
Papuashvili began by recounting a peculiar incident, stating, "they [the part of the opposition] pursued the images on the wall [in Tbilisi], claiming these were signs indicating where bombs should fall, only to discover it was a depiction of a cat”.
When questioned about the stay of Russian citizens in Georgia, Papuashvili stressed that a year and a half had passed without any incidents, including those involving citizens of Russia and Ukraine. He suggested that this period of calm indicated that many Russian citizens either hold Georgian nationality or have strong connections to the country, seeking refuge from conflicts initiated by Russia.The Chairman credited the country’s State Security Service for overseeing border control effectively, ensuring “no breaches” compromising the security environment. Heclaimed, "general control over the country's security situation remains at the highest level, with no reported incidents involving Russian citizens”.
He highlighted “It is evident that there is a desire [by opposition, affiliated groups] to initiate xenophobic campaigns, despite society not endorsing any provocative endeavors."