The Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia has confirmed that an official note was sent to the Russian Federation through the Swiss Embassy in Georgia, asking for help in putting out the forest fire in Borjomi gorge.
Georgia asked several countries for assistance for fire prevention measures.
"Because of the scope of the fire in Borjomi and the highly critical situation, operative and effective actions were required, as well as finding the necessary equipment," the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Georgia said in a statement.
"Moreover, we were searching for the necessary equipment that could help us to react effectively. Among the equipment procured, some was owned by the Russian Federation. Therefore, a telephone call was made between the Special Representative for Relations with Russia, Zurab Abashidze, and the Russian Deputy Foreign Minister, Grigory Karasin, in which the Russian side expressed its readiness to support equipment that would make the efforts of putting out the fire more efficient.
Subsequently, an official note was sent to Russia via the Swiss Embassy, that is part of the formal procedure. However, later there was no need for the assistance from the Russian Federation," reads the Ministry of Foreign Affairs statement.
The Ministry of Foreign Affairs also notes that relations between different countries’ rescue services is common during emergency situations.
On August 26, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation said in a statement that Tbilisi had requested their help to fight the forest fire in Borjomi gorge.
On August 22, the head of the public relations department of the Chancellery of the Government of Georgia told Tabula that Georgia has not requested any assistance from Russia. Prime Minister Giorgi Kvirikashvili also stated that it was the Russian side that offered to help put out the forest fire.