- By P.J. Aroon
Secretary Clinton said yesterday that the United States is “steadfast” in its commitment to Georgia’s sovereignty and called on Russia to end its occupation of Georgia. In a news conference with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili in Tbilisi she said:
The United States is steadfast in its commitment to Georgia’s sovereignty and territorial integrity. The United States does not recognize spheres of influence.
“Spheres of influence” refers to Russian President Dmitry Medvedev’s belief that Russia ought to have special influence in the former Soviet republics.
Clinton called on Russia to end the occupation, saying:
We continue to call for Russia to abide by the August 2008 cease-fire commitment signed by President Saakashvili and President Medvedev, including ending the occupation and withdrawing Russian troops from South Ossetia and Abkhazia to their pre-conflict positions.
During Clinton’s visit, she and Saakashvili appeared to get along quite well. The two took a stroll together, as seen below, and in the oldest section of Tbilisi, as soon above, they stopped at a cafe to toast with Georgian wine — a Teliani Valley satrapezo.
(For some reason, the photo of the two strolling isn’t showing up, but you can check it out by clicking here.)
Josh Rogin covers national security and foreign policy and writes the daily Web column The Cable. His column appears bi-weekly in the print edition of The Washington Post. He can be reached for comments or tips at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Previously, Josh covered defense and foreign policy as a staff writer for Congressional Quarterly, writing extensively on Iraq, Afghanistan, Guantánamo Bay, U.S.-Asia relations, defense budgeting and appropriations, and the defense lobbying and contracting industries. Prior to that, he covered military modernization, cyber warfare, space, and missile defense for Federal Computer Week Magazine. He has also served as Pentagon Staff Reporter for the Asahi Shimbun, Japan's leading daily newspaper, in its Washington, D.C., bureau, where he reported on U.S.-Japan relations, Chinese military modernization, the North Korean nuclear crisis, and more.
A graduate of George Washington University's Elliott School of International Affairs, Josh lived in Yokohama, Japan, and studied at Tokyo's Sophia University. He speaks conversational Japanese and has reported from the region. He has also worked at the House International Relations Committee, the Embassy of Japan, and the Brookings Institution.
Josh's reporting has been featured on CNN, MSNBC, C-Span, CBS, ABC, NPR, WTOP, and several other outlets. He was a 2008-2009 National Press Foundation's Paul Miller Washington Reporting Fellow, 2009 military reporting fellow with the Knight Center for Specialized Journalism and the 2011 recipient of the InterAction Award for Excellence in International Reporting. He hails from Philadelphia and lives in Washington, D.C.| The Cable |