Russian chief public health official Onishchenko may visit Georgia soon

Gennady Onishchenko, the head of the Russian consumer protection watchdog Rospotrebnadzor and chief public health official, says he has received an invitation to visit Georgia.

"As for a particular date for a visit, I expect that it might take place in a foreseeable future," Onishchenko told Interfax on Saturday.

 He confirmed that he received the invitation during Georgian Catholicos-Patriarch Ilia II of all Georgia's recent visit to Moscow.

"In addition, the invitation has been repeatedly confirmed. I accepted this invitation with gratitude and respect, regardless of the way the events develop," he said.

"In any development of the situation, I believe the role that the Holiest and Gracious Catholicos Ilia II plays in modern Georgia's history is hard to overestimate. It has a huge positive effect aimed at consolidating the nation and helping it to choose the right way for development, leaning on the immense and difficult historical experience that the Georgian nation possesses," he said.

Moscow and Tbilisi agreed on a mechanism to resume wine and mineral water imports from Georgia to Russia at negotiations in Moscow in early February.

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