Tourism Development and Occupation
Lado Bitchashvili, Shida Kartli
The Tourism Center at the Gori municipality administration had decided to participate in the international tourism exhibition-market in Moscow but after the information was spread in social networks, part of the society protested the decision of the tourism center.
“Representatives of the state institutions shall not participate in any concerts or tourism events organized in the occupant country. The main principle of the country shall not be sacrificed to economic benefits. We must speak only about de-occupation with Russia,” said Aleksandre Valiauri, member of the Republic Party.
Representatives of the tourism center say their planned visit in Moscow has nothing to do with politics and moreover with the de-occupation.
“I am surprised why they are speaking specifically about the tourist market in Moscow while the tourism center will initially participate in the tourism market in Beijing,” said the deputy director of the center Tamaz Makashvili said.
He added that the event is organized by a private company, which has no connection with the Government of the Russian Federation. Makashvili said the participation in the event will promote popularization of the tourist potential of the municipality.
Member of the Free Democrats Otar Kvirikashvili said the Security Council shall decide whether the state institutions should cooperate with Russia during the occupation regime or not; in case of cooperation, Otar Kvirikashvili believes, the state shall have its vision how the country can benefit from it. However, he thinks the Security Council is inactive nowadays.
The Winner of the 2016 EU Special Prize for Peace Journalism and 2016 NIMD Democracy Leader Gvantsa Doluashvili evaluates the issue in the view of citizen’s position and public responsibility. She thinks the decision of the tourism center to participate in the tourism exhibition in Moscow is linked with the main values of the country and visit in the occupant state demonstrates lack of principles in our country.
“Russia is the occupant country. We should have principle position about it. It is inadmissible to cooperate with the country, which openly fights against our independence. I think politics is in every field that is directly or indirectly associated with the occupant country and not only the state shall regulate it, but every citizen of Georgia shall be irreconcilable with the occupation.”
Gori district governor Davit Oniashvili also responded to the initiative of the tourism center. He said the decision was not yet made. They had received invitation from the organizers but based on his decision the tourism center will not participate in the exhibition in Moscow because there are not relevant funds in the local budget to fund the trip of participants.
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