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Georgian FM Denies CIS Ambitions

Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze
Foreign Minister Maia Panjikidze
Georgia's new foreign minister has dismissed suggestions her country may seek to re-enter the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS), saying the European Union and NATO are the "only organizations" Georgia plans to join.

Speaking on Georgian Rustavi-2 television, Maia Panjikidze said Georgia has not been invited to rejoin the CIS and that any such proposal would be "pointless."

A Russian official said last week he saw no obstacles to Georgia returning to the CIS, the nine-country regional grouping formed after the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Georgia withdrew from the CIS in 2009, a year after its tumultuous war with Russia.

Panjikidze said relations with Russia were a key topic during her talks on November 17 with U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs Philip Gordon.

Based on reporting by ITAR-TASS and

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