South Ossetia Commemorates Victims Of Georgian Aggression
August 8, 2012
South Ossetia commemorates victims of Georgian aggression
TSKHINVALI: Events marking the fourth anniversary of the Georgian attack on South Ossetia in August 2008 are being held in Tskhinvali, an Interfax correspondent reported.
An exhibit of paintings, damaged in the war, titled “War Through Paintings’ Eyes” was opened on Theater Square in the center of the city. Canvasses by prominent South Ossetian painters, damaged by Georgian shells, symbolize the tragedy of those days.
Local residents and visitors gathered for a ceremony, attended by President Leonid Tibilov, lawmakers and Cabinet members. Priest Father Iakov addressed the audience, saying that the tragic days of August 2008 must not be forgotten.
“We have gathered here today to think back to those days and to tell our children about them. We pay tribute to our defenders, to those who sacrificed their lives and who survived and carry on. But we have also gathered for a holiday that asserts that life is continuing in our homeland,” he said.
The priest thanked all and invited people who had gathered on the square to join a procession to the Church of the Nativity of the Holy Virgin for a commemorative service.
August 8, 2012
Events on 4th anniversary of Georgia aggression held in South Ossetia
TSKHINVAL: Events are currently held in South Ossetia on the fourth anniversary of the beginning of the Georgian aggression against the republic, the people of which honour the memory and courage of the heroes – compatriots and Russian peacekeepers – who thwarted the adventurist plans of Tbilisi in August 2008.
The memory action “Let us Remember all…” was held in the republic’s capital overnight. The guests and residents of South Ossetia, representatives of the Alania Diocese and the republic’s leadership marched in a religious procession from the capital’s Teatralnaya Square to the Square of Fatherland Defenders.
At a screen installed there documentary footage of the combat actions was shown, and mournful music was played by the Rachmaninoff Russian State TV and Radio Symphony Orchestra.
“The South Ossetian leadership promises that it will never forget the friends and relatives of the soldiers who fell on the field of battle in the land of South Ossetia. The treacherous attack began at a time when world attention was focused on the opening of the Olympic Games in Beijing. Innocent civilians, young defenders of our state, peacemakers were killed,” the republic’s President Leonid Tibilov told the crowd in the square.
Russian Ambassador to South Ossetia Elbrus Kargiyev pledged that the aggression will not recur, and that the Russian Federation is the guarantor of security of the republic’s population. “Today we mourn, remember and grieve over the untimely deaths of women, children, old people, the wonderful Tskhinval guys – patriots of their country and, certainly, the Russian peacekeepers. But there is also a reason for joy – South Ossetia has got the opportunity to live a peaceful life and develop. As Russia’s representative I guarantee that that the children of South Ossetia will never see the horrors of war. The guarantors of this are the Russian Federation and its political leadership, the leaders of our country and the structures – diplomatic and military – that at the invitation of the republic’s leadership and the will of the Ossetian people have settled in South Ossetia,” Kargiyev stressed.
After the church service in the Cathedral of the Blessed Virgin Mary on Tskhinval’s outskirts, prayers were uttered and candles were lit in memory of those who were killed by the Georgian aggressors’ attack.
The aggressors launched the open invasion of South Ossetia after tension escalated in the Georgian-Ossetian conflict zone. Early in August, the Georgian side systematically opened artillery fire and sniper shooting at Tskhinval and Ossetian villages, posts of the republic’s law enforcement structures and the North Ossetian battalion of the joint peacekeeping forces.
Fire was opened from bordering Georgian residential sites. Dozens of civilians were killed or wounded during the first week of the month. The republic’s authorities began to evacuate women and children.
The efforts of the Russian and South Ossetian members of the Mixed Control Commission and the command of the joint peacekeeping forces could not prevent the war. The Georgian side stated in words that it was committed to a peaceful crisis settlement, but in fact stalled the negotiating process.
Shortly before midnight on August 7, sleeping Tskhinval and nearby Ossetian villages were attacked with missile and artillery fire and air strikes.
Along with artillery fire, the Georgian army used Grad multiple launch rocket systems and cluster bombs (mass destruction weapons) against the civilian population.
The Ossetian villages of Khetagurovo, Dmenis, Pris, Sarabuk, Satikar, Mugut, Didmukha, Galuanta and others were also intensively shelled.
Early on August 8, Georgian tanks attacked the southern outskirts of Tskhinval. The strikes also hit the barracks of the Russian peacekeepers in the upper area of the south Ossetian capital.
City defenders and peacekeepers started fighting with the attackers. Some Georgian armoured vehicles were hit and burst into flames on Tskhinval streets. The fierce street fighting continued throughout the day.
In this critical situation, Russian leaders decided to start an operation to force the Georgian aggressor to peace. Units of Russian Army 58 came into the republic. Tskhinval was unblocked in two days. The Georgian troops were forced far into their territory. They were completely demoralised.
August 8, 2012
Georgia may seek revenge over Ossetian War – Moscow
Four years on after the August 2008 war in the Caucasus, Georgian authorities are still considering seeking revenge and using force against South Ossetia and Abkhazia, says the Russian Foreign Ministry.
The situation on the border between Georgia and the Republic of Abkhazia is alarming, according to Deputy FM Grigory Karasin.
Georgian Special Forces penetrate into Abkhazia’s Gali District and “persistently terrorize the local population,” he stated in an interview with RIA Novosti. In this way, he went on, Tbilisi is attempting to destabilize the situation in the region.
This shows that Georgian politicians still consider revenge scenarios and the use of force to restore their territorial integrity, the Russian diplomat observed.
Ahead of October’s parliamentary vote, Tbilisi is “whipping up fears about the threat from Russia,” Karasin pointed out.
Hysteria about Russia’s planned military drills, Kavkaz (Caucasus)-2012, has been going on for about a year.
“There is an outcry about some kind of plans by Russia to carry out an aggression, to destroy the Georgian statehood,” he said, adding that it is all part of the Georgian “propagandistic delirium.”
According to the diplomat, the international community has got used to President Mikhail Saakashvili’s lack of restraint: the Georgian leader makes warlike statements all the time. Accusations against Moscow should be viewed appropriately, taking into consideration the “emotionality and provocative nature of the Georgian leadership’s intentions,” Karasin noted.
Russia hopes that common sense will eventually prevail in the former Soviet republic. However, that will take time as Georgian authorities have yet to realize that hysteria should be replaced with serious politics, the deputy foreign minister stated.
As for Kavkaz-2012, Karasin reminded that the Russian leadership and diplomats have repeatedly given explanations about the war games scheduled for September.
On Tuesday, senior military official, Aleksandr Posntikov underlined that the upcoming exercises do not pose a threat to any other countries or military and political blocs. The drills will only be held on Russian territory.
“Our exercise has nothing to do with events in other countries, including in Georgia,” Colonel General Postnikov said, cited Itar-Tass. “However, in order to rule out any possibility of speculations on that issue, our military bases in Abkhazia, South Ossetia and even in Armenia will not participate in the Kavkaz-2012 exercise,” he stressed.