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U.S. Ambassador Again Warns Georgians That Moscow Likely To Meddle In Elections


U.S. Ambassador to Georgia Kelly Degnan (file photo)

TBILISI -- U.S. Ambassador to Georgia Kelly Degnan has warned for the second time since early July that Russia will likely try to interfere in the upcoming parliamentary elections in the South Caucasus country.

"Georgia should expect that Russia is going to interfere in the elections. There is a long pattern of interference through disinformation campaigns and other efforts that have been fairly consistent, not just related to the election but in general, and this is something that the United States Embassy, as well as other international donors, have initiatives to try and raise awareness among Georgian public and to help Georgians be able to discern, to tell the difference between fake news and accurate reporting," Degnan said at a press conference in Tbilisi on August 31.

"Again, I think the political leaders getting out there with their campaigns that are designed to educate the voters about the issues that are important to them -- education, economic recovery, health care -- this is the way to ensure the voters go to the polls well-informed and ready to cast their ballots, and the best way push back against disinformation from Russia or anywhere else," Degnan said.

On July 1, Degnan expressed similar concerns during a panel discussion organized by the Georgian Institute of Politics in Tbilisi.

Parliamentary elections in Georgia are scheduled for October 31.

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