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. Last Updated: 07/27/2016

Saakashvili to Meet With Putin

TBILISI, Georgia -- Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili will meet President Vladimir Putin on Tuesday in an attempt to defuse tensions.

But no breakthrough is expected.

"Georgia's tense relations with Russia are in a deadlock. ... This meeting is unlikely to result in a serious breakthrough because the two sides are not ready for compromises," said Gocha Tskitishvili, an independent analyst.

Recent months have seen a bitter war of words between Georgia and Russia, which has banned Georgian wines and mineral water. Putin agreed to hold the leaders' first one-to-one talks since 2004 after speaking to Saakashvili by telephone. They will meet in St. Petersburg.

After he called Putin last week, Saakashvili told his Security Council that relations must be based on "the absolute inviolability of Georgian territory and peaceful restoration of Georgia's territorial integrity." This statement and the call to Putin came right after the Russian Foreign Ministry said it respected the principle of territorial integrity but also recognized the right of Georgia's de facto independent South Ossetia region to self-determination.

Saakashvili wants to regain control over South Ossetia and a second region, Abkhazia.

"Resolving the conflicts in Abkhazia and South Ossetia will be the most difficult and painful of the issues to be discussed at the meeting with Putin," said Archil Gegeshidze of the Georgian Foundation of International Studies.