"Not Just Rhetoric:" U.S. Says Its Relationship With Georgia 'Under Review' And Might Face Serious Policy Ramifications

"Not Just Rhetoric:" U.S. Says Its Relationship With Georgia 'Under Review' And Might Face Serious Policy Ramifications

The United States on Wednesday, once again, signalled "serious policy ramifications" in its relationship with Georgia, which is currently "under review", as the State Department put it, following the Georgian government's passage of Kremlin-backed "foreign agents" law last week,  TURAN's Washington correspondent reports.

"We announced a review less than two weeks ago of our relationship given the law that Georgia has passed... I’m being a little flippant in response to your answer, but it’s – it’s because there are actual serious policy ramifications here, not just rhetoric," Matthew Miller, State Department's Spokesperson, told a daily briefing when asked by TURAN whether Washington has already downgraded its relationship with Tbilisi.

"It is about the amount of assistance that we provide to Georgia, some 390 million that was budgeted over the past few years, that is under review.  It is about potential sanctions, visa restrictions that we announced as a policy less than two weeks ago, that we are studying right now whether and how and when to implement. So, you will see more from us. You will hear more from us, as regards to this question, but I’m not ready to do so today," the spokesperson explained.

Miller's comments came as the Georgian Dream government officials this week doubled down on their anti-U.S. rhetoric, with the Prime Minister himself yesterday attacking on the U.S. Congress due to a recent public hearing on Georgia, and even calling some Georgian representatives, who testified before the lawmakers, "traitors."

Secretary of State Antony Blinken last month announced that anyone who undermines democratic processes or institutions in Georgia, as well as their immediate family members, may be found ineligible for U.S. visas under a newly announced policy precluding travel to the United States.

Miller said that while the senior State Department officials, in consultation with colleagues across the interagency, are currently conducting the review, Blinken will make final decisions.

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