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The silence of the observers2008-12-02 12:34
On the first winter day South Ossetia is again communicating alarming news. Last night Tskhinval district came under large-caliber weapons fire. The Georgian side denies this fact. International observers acting in the area arrived at the scene of the event.
The current situation in which the Georgian and South Ossetian sides accuse each other of borderline incidents is no more a surprise to anyone. Following last night's attack at Tskhinval district the Georgian Interior Ministry asserts that the shots were heard only from the South Ossetian side.
The August events illustrated very well that alongside with the military actions the information war plays a rather significant part. At that time it was Georgia to win the war. It will be remembered that the scenes of Tskhinval under fire broadcast all over American channels were served to the viewers as "the Russian aggression in Georgia".
The truth was unveiled to the world only after the EU observers came to the region. The independent investigations they made confirmed the fact that the Georgians had been first to attack. The trust to the statements of the official Tbilisi was shattered though by now the EU representatives in the area are in no haste to admit the facts of more frequent firing.
In connection with this a question arises: are the people responsible for making independent evaluation of the events able to cope with their task?
It looks like repetition of the words pronounced in the form of affirmations and wishes by the Permanent Representative of the Russian Federation to the United Nations Vitaly Cherkin in his interview with ITAR-TASS.
"The leaders of the Russian diplomacy would like to draw the EU observers' attention to the fact that they must be more responsible to the observance of the mandate - he stated. - To give a tough evaluation of the actions concerning say the growth of power officials' presence in the security zones adjacent to South Ossetia and Abkhazia. I hope there will be a form of international presence that would afford good protection from the Georgian provocations than it is now in the context of the current format of the EU observers".
A couple of weeks later acting prime minister of South Ossetia Boris Chochiev was not favorable about the international observers' activity. At his meeting with the journalists he emphasized: