ERGNETI, 2 March 2023 - The 111th Incident Prevention and Response Mechanism (IPRM) was held today in Ergneti, under the co-facilitation of the Head of the EU Monitoring Mission in Georgia (EUMM), Dimitrios Karabalis, and Viorel Moşanu, the Special Representative of the OSCE Chairperson-in-Office for the South Caucasus.
The EUMM and OSCE co-facilitators commended the commitment of the participants to the IPRM format. In this regard, at the start of the IPRM, the newly appointed EUMM Head of Mission Dimitrios Karabalis stated:
“It is a great honour to co-facilitate this extremely important format for the first time, together with my OSCE colleague, Ambassador Moşanu. The IPRM meetings are one of the most crucial tools for maintaining stability on the ground through practical and constructive dialogue. I encourage participants to always strive for practical solutions, especially when it comes to making the life of women and men affected by conflict easier, on both sides of the Administrative Boundary Line (ABL).”
During the meeting, the EUMM and OSCE advocated for the lifting of freedom of movement restrictions during the upcoming Easter holiday season, while reiterating their calls for the full re-opening of crossing points for regular cross-ABL traffic. The co-facilitators took note of the recent release of two detainees and urged a humanitarian approach towards the resolution of existing detention cases. They encouraged all participants to find solutions to decrease the challenges faced by the conflict-affected population and emphasized the value of dialogue and pragmatism.
Discussions in the IPRM also focused on the most recent security developments at the ABL, including instances of ‘borderisation’. All participants agreed that the upcoming agricultural season necessitates increased dialogue in the IPRM format and over the EUMM-operated Hotline. In this regard, the participants commended the work of the Hotline, underlining it is an essential instrument to exchange information and manage incidents.
The participants agreed to convene the next regular IPRM meeting on 25 April.