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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Shevardnadze In France to Sign Friendship Treaty

PARIS -- Georgian leader Eduard Shevardnadze arrived in France on Thursday for a two-day visit during which he will sign a treaty of friendship and cooperation.

"The treaty is the latest in a series negotiated with the former Soviet countries which France would like to see bolster their independence, sovereignty and territorial integrity," a Foreign Ministry spokesman said before the visit.

At talks with President Francois Mitterrand on Friday, Shevardnadze will also sign the 1990 Paris charter of the Conference on Security and Cooperation in Europe, or CSCE, enshrining commitments to democracy, human rights and the market economy.

France is expected to insist that the conflict between Georgia and breakaway Abkhazia be settled peacefully through the CSCE and the United Nations.

Shevardnadze will meet Foreign Minister Alain Juppe and French business leaders.