U.S. Ambassador to Georgia Kelly Degnan Thursday said, “I have not met with Mr. Ivanishvili in quite some time.”
Asked about MP Mikheil Kavelashvili’s claim of a meeting with the ruling Georgian Dream party founder and former Prime Minister Bidzina Ivanishvili, Kelly Degnan said, “I’m a diplomat, so I’m not going to take offense at that, but that is simply not true. And I have to say I wonder a little bit—I’m a little puzzled at why this MP would be making such a claim based on no information, since I don’t know him. And he certainly wasn’t in any of my meetings with Mr. Ivanishvili. So, I’m a little puzzled at his motive for even making this claim.”
“When I was asked about this on Tuesday, I had not read the comment, and I don’t like to comment until I understand the facts, unlike some who like to comment based on innuendo and speculation and rumours.
“But I can say now that I have not met with Mr. Ivanishvili in quite some time. In every meeting I’ve had with him over the past two and a half years that I have been in Georgia, I have always assured him of the United States’ full support for the people of Georgia and our willingness to work with the government of Georgia for Georgia’s Euro-Atlantic future for Georgia’s democratic and economic development. In none of those meetings have I ever tried to blackmail Mr. Ivanishvili,” she asserted.