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Georgia: Russia warning is 'a threat of aggression'

Latest update : 2008-04-26

Georgia said on Saturday that a warning to intervene in its breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia by Russia is a threat of aggression and against international law.

Russia's warning that it could use military force in Georgia's breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia is a breach of international law, Georgia said on Saturday.


A Russian Foreign Ministry envoy said on Friday that Russia might have to use military means to protect "compatriots" in the regions if they were attacked.


"The statement about the possible use of force against Georgia in Abkhazia and South Ossetia on the part of Russia is a
violation of all international legal acts and agreements," Georgia's Foreign Ministry said in a statement.


"The Russian side is taking aggressive actions," it said.


Russia's ties with Georgia have been strained for more than a decade by Moscow's support of the two separatist regions,
which threw off Georgian rule after wars in the 1990s.


Georgian President Mikhail Saakashvili says he wants to bring the regions back under Tbilisi's control.


Moscow said this month it was deepening ties with the two regions, where most of the population have been issued with
Russian passports.


"Russia is trying to justify their criminal activities in relation to the Georgian separatist regions by saying they protect Russian citizens there," the Georgian ministry said.


"However the actions of Russia contradict the fundamental obligations which derive from the European Convention of Human Rights," it said.


Russia and Georgia are engaged in a war of words over the downing of a Georgian spy drone over Georgia's breakaway region of Abkhazia, a stretch of land run by pro-Moscow separatists on the Black Sea coast.


Georgia said a Russian jet shot down the drone in a deliberate act of international aggression. Russia says Abkhaz
separatists downed the unmanned aircraft and that the flight itself was a breach of international agreements.

Date created : 2008-04-26