Saakashvili: Georgia has no intention to recognize Kosovo

Georgia's President Mikhail Saakashvili said Thursday that Georgia "has no intention to recognize the unilateral declaration of Kosovo's independence".

(KosovoCompromise Staff) Friday, May 09, 2008

"We are saying loud and clear that we have never planned to recognize Kosovo. Nor do we plan to do so in the future," he said in Batumi.

"The way out of the situation that has been chosen is not the best one. The Serbs should have been given more time for negotiations. The solution for Kosovo was a hasty one," Saakashvili said.

Meanwhile, in Montenegro, the government in Podgorica said it would carry out a "thorough examination" of its citizens' opinion before deciding on whether to recognize Kosovo or not.

"No one is exerting pressure on Montenegro to recognize Kosovo and the whole international community understands the official Podgorica stance. The decision shall be made by Montenegro alone," a high-ranking official, Miodrag Vukovic, said.

He maintained that the issue should be solved in a way that will "absolutely take into account the need to not disturb Montenegro and the region."

"It is a high-risk issue that draws very strong emotions, divides nations, an issue that is not just an academic political problem," Vukovic concluded.

Three quarters of citizens of Montenegro (42%  Montenegrins and 32 % Serbs) are followers of the Serb Orthodox Church are feel closely linked to Kosovo Serb heritage.