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Statement - Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Republic of Abkhazia

The war unleashed by Georgia against South Ossetia demonstrates conclusively that, despite assurances of its commitment to a peaceful resolution of the conflict, Georgia has been intensively preparing for armed aggression. The beginning of the war on the opening day of the International Olympic Games in Peking is nothing but a cynical attempt to divert international attention from developments in South Ossetia. In this context, the passive response of the UN Security Council will do nothing but promote the continuation of a conflict in which civilians are continuing to be killed and which has already led to a large number of refugees.

The actions by Georgia are a grave violation of International law that will lead to a destabilization of the situation in the whole region. It can easily lead to irreversible and unforeseen consequences. The position of the international facilitators in the conflict, who persist in denying the guilt of Georgia for unleashing war, can only promote an escalation of military action. It raises doubts among the Abkhazians about their objectivity and ability to do anything helpful to support the maintenance of peace in the region. In this regard their eventual role in the Georgian-Abkhaz conflict will be at best unhelpful, at worst destructive.

The reaction of the International Community to the prevailing situation is seen in Abkhazia as a good indication of its likely reaction, should similar military intervention against Abkhazia be undertaken by the Georgian side. Taking everything into consideration, the conclusion must be clear to all: there are absolutely no prospects for the reintegration of Abkhazia and South Ossetia into Georgia. Henceforth, any 'assurances' by Georgia to resolve the conflict in Abkhazia and South Ossetia by peaceful means will be considered by the Abkhaz side as a blatant attempt to mislead not only the people of Abkhazia but the whole international community, for there can be no doubt that behind such 'assurances' lies the real threat of renewed military aggression against Abkhazia also. The refusal of Georgia, under any conditions, to withdraw its troops from the upper Kodor Gorge, where they were illegally introduced in 2006, and to sign a Peace Agreement with Abkhazia also only serves to confirm suspicions that Georgia plans to start a war with Abkhazia.

Taking all of this into account, the Abkhaz side calls upon the International Community (inter alia the UN) to abandon its passive position of being a mere observer and give an unambiguous assessment of the actions of Georgia and also to take decisive steps to ensure an immediate end to the military actions in South Ossetia.

Sukhum 08.08.2008

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