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12 October, 2018 10:29
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“Russia knows we cannot join NATO, Russia is in comfort with us” – new audio allegedly includes Vano Chkhartishvili’s conversation about Russian influence

Courier news program broadcast on Rustavi2 has released yet another secret audio recording of conversation, which contains a dialogue about the change of the previous government of Georgia. The tape includes the speech of businessman Vano Chkhartishvili, a person having close contacts to Georgia’s ex-prime minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, who speaks about his meeting with the chief of Russian president’s administration, Sergey Narishkin asking him to help them overthrow Saakashvili’s government.

The tape makes it clear that Chkhartishvili used to conduct secret negotiations with Moscow during the previous government in Georgia and that the closest circles of the Georgian Dream leader has been in close contacts with the Kremlin leaders using this for the change of government in Georgia.

Along with Chkhartishvili, the voices of Omega Group owner, Zaza Okuashvili and another businessman Irakli Chubishvili are also heard on the tape.

Vano Chkhartishvili says that Narishkin offered him to meet with Vladimir Putin, but he rejected the offer. The tape also contains a conversation about the chief of Bidzina Ivanishvli’s security, however, it is impossible to make out the role of that person during those negotiations due to the faults on the tape.

Vano Chkhartishvili: “In Misha’s period I was in London, where I met Narishkin. He was a serous figure in Russia, the chief of Putin’s administration, afterwards he was the chairperson of the parliament and we met in Germany, and he told me he would organize my meeting with Putin, but I refused, saying I did not know what to tell him; I said I was not prepared for a meeting on something serious and Narishkin told me I was the first person who refused to meet him. I told him it would be just a meeting, shaking hands and something…. I told him that if there is something serious, maybe they would help us overthrow Misha, I said kind of… if there was any instrument for that. And, I told him what and how it was possible and afterwards he discussed those issues there with Lavrov and others but could not offer anything, they did not say anything like to come here and sold here and something. Then he went to the parliament chairperson. By the way, he is a very serious person now, he is Bidzina’s security chief”.

Zaza Okuashvili: “So, what did he say, what and how could be done?”

Vano Chkhartishvili: “well, that is the most serious”

Zaza Okuashvili: “That’s the most serious”.

Vano Chkhartishvili: “Yes, he was a figure then; my acquaintance, who was his buddy, organized my meeting with him in Munich, and it was the period when they wanted to overthrow Misha and they failed then to have contacts here. Irakli knows all this, what they should change in Russia, what they should change to make Russians work here.”

In the audio tape, Vano Chkhartishvili asserts that direct negotiations are necessary with Russia and the messages delivered only by means of the opposition are ineffective. He also says it is up to the government to talk with Russians.

Vano Chkhartishvili: “It is the government who should talk with Russians. When opposition does this, it has no outcome. Then what does it mean to say you support the opposition and you do not support the government?1

Irakli Chubinishvili: “Russia generally treats that issue this way that now one has come to me for a deal and yes, I will give them something.

Vano Chkhartishvili: “No, Russia will think to make money with me, they won’t give you money, they will never give you money. Narishkin told us, you want money, I said we did not want money. He thought that it was for money and I told him we did not want money, but just take some political step or something and we passed through some issues, here, there, everything and the situation is like this.”

Zaza Okuashvili: “It is very difficult”

Vano Chkhartishvili: “They will dig out Irma and them, label them, the circumstances are like… I think… I don’t know actually.

Zaza Okuashvili: “It is very risky, I am afraid.”

Vano Chkhartishvili: “as the social surveys show, I don’t know”.

In the same audio, Vano Chkhartishvili talks about the relations between Georgian and Russian governments and points to the influence of Russia on Ivanishvili’s team.

Zaza Okuashvili: “Well, Russia is full of Russians, though it is hard to discern, whether from Ukraine or Russia and you hear Russian conversations and Turkish all around.”

Vano Chkhartishvili:” Yes, sure, the government shall make something, I don’t know, they are bent on their knees, I have no idea”.

Zaza Okuashhvili: “Is Russia satisfied? They are probably irritated by NATO, NATO.

Vano Ckhartishvili: NATO, they know we cannot joint NATO, Russia is in great comfort now with us, with Georgia.

Zaza Okuashvili: “it is in comfort”.

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