Iranian and Russian foreign ministers hope Georgia will join the 3+3 format after all
Georgia and 3+3
Iranian and Russian Foreign Ministers Hosein Amir-Abdolahian and Sergey Lavrov express hope that Georgia will join the 3+3 format. Lavrov explains this by the Georgian government’s policy based on “national interests”, while the Iranian Foreign Minister says that “we will witness Georgia’s constructive and effective participation”.
Another meeting of the 3+3 foreign ministers was held in Tehran on October 23. The Georgian Foreign Ministry said that the country will not participate in this meeting, as before.
“The current government in Tbilisi, as has been proven many times before, in all its actions proceeds from basic national interests. This gives me reason to assume that a full 3+3 format can be launched in the near future.”
Hosein Amir-Abdollahian’s statement:
“We hope that at the next meetings, which will be dedicated to discussing the problems of the South Caucasus, we will witness the constructive and effective participation of Georgia.”
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What is the “3+3” format?
The idea of a “new platform for regional cooperation to ensure lasting peace and stability” or “3+3” in the South Caucasus belongs to Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who came up with this initiative after the second Karabakh war in 2020.
The first meeting in the new format was held in 2021, also without Georgia, although the original idea implied its participation. Thus, according to Erdogan’s idea, the governments of Turkey, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Georgia, Russia and Iran were to participate in the meetings of the “3+3” format. According to the Turkish president, the establishment of peace in the Caucasus region is possible through regional cooperation and it will benefit the entire planet.
Initially, official Tbilisi said that Georgia “should somehow participate in this format so that the country does not lose its function in the region.” However, so far Georgia has not participated in any such meeting.
In March 2023, Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that official Tbilisi was still considering joining the 3+3 format. This statement provoked a strong reaction among pro-Western Georgian political parties and the civil sector, as they strongly oppose Georgia’s inclusion in anti-Western platforms.