Russia parliament condemns pro-US Georgia

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MOSCOW, Oct 2 (Reuters) Russian lawmakers criticised neighbouring Georgia's pro-US policies and voted unanimously today to condemn ''anti-democratic'' behaviour in the former Soviet republic.

The 391-0 vote in favour of the harshly phrased resolution is the latest in a series of acrimonious political exchanges between Moscow and Tbilisi.

Russia has already curtailed trade, migration and transport links in a year-long conflict over alleged spying in Georgia, while Moscow has also voiced support for Georgia's breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

Although under increasing domestic political pressure, Georgia's President Mikhail Saakashvili has continued to clash with Moscow, as recently as last week at the UN General Assembly in New York, generating a fierce reaction from Russian media.

Russian parliamentarians in their resolution also complained of poor human rights standards in Georgia and stated that the country's relations with Washington would have a negative impact on stability in the region.

The chair of the Duma's committee overseeing relations with ex-Soviet countries, Andrei Kokoshin, said Russia had not yet applied all of its levers of influence on Georgia, according to comments carried on Georgian Imedi TV channel.

''What is happening in Georgia is a direct continuation of the so-called 'rose' revolution, which in fact was a coup d'etat that brazenly violated the Georgian constitution and its laws,'' the BBC's monitoring service quoted him as saying on Imedi TV.

REUTERS RS MIR RAI2023

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