The meeting was expected to issue an “İstanbul Declaration” adopted by all members of the Committee of Ministers, but a statement by Turkey and Ukraine was released instead. The statement was signed by Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu, in his capacity as the outgoing chair of the Committee of Ministers, and Ukrainian Foreign Minister Kostyantyn Gryschenko, the incoming chair of the committee, as co-chairs of the meeting.
The Russian and Georgian delegations were in disagreement over the wording of certain parts of the text of the declaration that concerned them, the Anatolia news agency reported, citing diplomatic sources. Foreign Minister Davutoğlu tried to resolve the dispute as chairman of the Committee of Ministers, but his efforts failed to produce a result.
Russia and Georgia fought a war in August 2008 after Georgia launched a military campaign in the breakaway region of South Ossetia to regain control over the territory. The war left South Ossetia under the de facto control of a Russian-backed government which does not have international recognition.
The İstanbul meeting of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe brought together representatives from 47 member nations as well as five states with observer status. Turkey handed over the chairmanship of the committee to Ukraine at the end of the meeting.