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U.S. Eyed in Shevardnadze's Resignation

Russia’s foreign minister has accused the United States of playing a role in the resignation of Georgian leader Eduard Shevardnadze last month, according to an interview published Saturday in the Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper. “I think there are enough facts proving that what happened in those days wasn’t spontaneous, it didn’t arise suddenly,” Foreign Minister Igor Ivanov was quoted as saying. “Of course, there were preparations and the U.S. ambassador was involved, as Shevardnadze himself admitted.” Ivanov also said that a fund set up by billionaire philanthropist George Soros to bolster civil society and the rule of law in the former Soviet Union played a role. Shevardnadze had earlier accused Soros of funding the opposition, and he noted that U.S. Ambassador to Georgia, Richard Miles, was posted in Yugoslavia before the overthrow of Slobodan Milosevic. Shevardnadze had told The Associated Press that Miles might have encouraged Georgia’s opposition. Senior Washington officials have denied any U.S. conspiracy to depose Shevardnadze. Full Story

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