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TBILISI, May 25 (RIA Novosti) - Georgia is ready to provide all assistance that Russia needs to ensure security during the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi, Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili said on Friday.
“The Georgian side will provide maximum assistance; we should ensure that no incident takes place during the Olympics,” Ivanishvili told journalists.
The first Winter Games in Eastern Europe will be held in February 2014 in the resort city of Sochi. The Olympic Park is located roughly four kilometers west of the border with the territory of Abkhazia, which Georgia claims as part of its territory but Russia considers independent and maintains a large military presence there.
Georgian President Saakashvili had urged the world to consider snubbing the event in the wake of the 2008 Russian-Georgian war. But after his party lost parliamentary elections in October, relations between Georgia and Russia began to warm and a new cabinet rejected any ideas of a boycott.
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Any response would likely boomerang on Russia – the partnership between Rosneft and ExxonMobil is a case in point. The United States has hit Russia with a third round of sanctions. This time the Americans went with a higher caliber weapon, targeting Russia’s biggest energy companies (Rosneft and Novatek) and banks (VEB and Gazprombank).