Sarkozy seen ready to revisit Russia and Georgia

PARIS (Reuters) – President Nicolas Sarkozy is ready to revisit Moscow and Tbilisi to help resolve the Russian-Georgian conflict, French Prime Minister Francois Fillon said on Monday.

Fillon told French radio Sarkozy would put forward proposals at a summit of European Union leaders called to discuss the crisis later on Monday, but he said the question of possible sanctions against Russia was not on the agenda.

“The French president will propose to his European counterparts a number of initiatives which we will see in a few days,” he told Europe 1 radio.

Fillon said that among the initiatives Sarkozy would propose was that “he will head for the Russian and Georgian capitals to promote the cause of peace”.

He added: “The word ‘sanctions’ is not on the agenda today. The word that is on the agenda is ‘dialogue’.”

Sarkozy flew to Moscow and Tbilisi last month to negotiate a six-point ceasefire deal and France, which holds the rotating European Union presidency, has taken a softer line with Russia than other European countries such as Britain.

“There are two possible options. Either one wants to re-create the Cold War at all costs, pointing the finger at Russia, isolating it … that is not the path that France has chosen. That is not the path that Europe has chosen,” Fillon said, adding that the other option was to pursue dialogue.

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