“Naturally, it’s important,” the ambassador said, adding that “as far as this truck is concerned, I don’t think anyone has any information about it.”
After the explosion on the Crimean bridge connecting Russia and Ukraine, the Russian FSB said that the Main Intelligence Directorate of the Ministry of Defense of Ukraine, its head Kirill Budanov, employees and agents were behind the explosion. The FSB also released a scheme for delivering explosives to their destination. In particular, according to the statement of the department, an explosive device hidden in rolls of polyethylene film for construction purposes was delivered to Bulgaria from the port of Odessa. According to the FSB, after that, three citizens of Ukraine, two citizens of Georgia and one citizen of Armenia were involved in the transportation of cargo, first to the port of Poti, and then to Armenia. Georgian Deputy Interior Minister Alexander Darakhvelidze and Deputy Finance Minister Giorgi Kakauridze denied these accusations.
Ambassador Degnan stressed that the US is working closely with Georgia’s Customs, Immigration, Coast Guard and Border Protection. “We have been working with these structures for decades and are trying to strengthen their capabilities and help them protect their borders in order to deter Russian aggression,” the US ambassador said, adding that “we will continue to do this in the future.”
“Power of the people”
Asked about the letters circulated to the ambassador by the Power of the People movement, Kelly Degnan said that “we are very clear, consistent and transparent about why the United States of America cares about Georgia and what the United States is doing in this country.”
According to her, “regardless of what power was in power,” the United States has been helping Georgia for 30 years to become more secure, protect its borders, develop its economy, improve its education and health systems, and build democratic institutions.
The ambassador noted that Georgia “in 1918 was a very progressive democratic country, and now it is returning to the same position.” “The United States of America is helping Georgia build its democratic institutions, not only because it is desired by the vast majority of Georgia, but also because it is necessary for Georgia to move closer to the European Union, which should be emphasized by all members of the Georgian parliament,” she added.
In this context, the US Ambassador reiterated that political leaders must do everything for the country to receive the status of an EU candidate.
“Georgia has done so much and achieved so much,” she said. “The next step is very close, but the leadership of Georgia must be 100 percent focused on achieving it for the benefit of the Georgian people.” “This is what the United States is focused on in helping Georgia: we know that this is what worries the Georgian people the most,” Ambassador Degnan added.