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Georgia and Russia: mutual accusations2008-10-24 09:29
Moscow and Tbilisi continued exchanging mutual accusations. Georgia is preoccupied with the growth of Russian military forces in South Ossetia. However Russia denies these statements and in its turn warns of threat of militarization of Georgia
Last Thursday The Head of Information and Analytics Department of the Ministry of the Interior of Georgia Shota Utyashvili at the briefing in Tbilisi made a statement for the journalists that for the past week 2 thousand Russian militaries had arrived in Dzhava village in South Ossetia. "According to our information the number of Russian troops in South Ossetia grew up to 7 thousand militaries and it arouses concern. Two days ago about 40 units of heavy combat equipment and four airplanes were relocated from Tskhinval to Akhalgory region accompanied by a few thousand of soldiers and officers", - he said.
Russia gave an outright denial to this statement and in its turn accused Georgia of escalation of military preparations appealing to the countries that are Georgia's donors to establish efficient control over appropriation of the donated funds to prevent their spending on arms.
In particular, the Minister for Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation called Utyashvili a false data disseminator. "It is difficult to comment on the statements of Georgian representatives as there is very little truth in them and unfortunately the method of throwing false data into information field has been applied quite regularly of late", - he said.
Later in the Day Lavrov stated that the earlier announced intention of placing 3700-3800 soldiers in South Ossetia and Abkhazia remained in force and any speculation over these figures was under the responsibility of those who reports on them.
According to the Ministry of Defense representative Alexandr Drobyshevsky Tbilisi outshoot is no more than an act of information provocation in order to maintain tension inside the region.
At a joint press conference with the Minister for Foreign Affairs of Latvia Maris Ryextinsh Lavrov said that "from time to time the Georgian party sent special forces and other armed units to the zones adjacent to South Ossetia and Abkhazia". He accused the EU observers of insufficiently responsible attitude to the current situation in the so-called security zones.
Ryextinsh however retorted that the observers took the task that had been set before them with full responsibility but their work was hampered by disability to access the territories of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.