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Gas for South Ossetia bypassing Georgia2008-12-11 12:27
On December 9 four gas filling stations started their work in Tskhinval, Java and Znauri
"Each of them is rated for 25 c.m. of gas - vice president of the republic Hasan Pliev stated. - South Ossetia needs such stations as until recently the liquefied fuel-gas cylinders were refilled by a few old machines. The people of the republic, social objects are constrained to use liquefied gas as following the Georgian aggression in August 2008 Georgia stopped supplying gas to the republic. "Gazenergoset" (Gazprom" affiliate) has already delivered 200 tons of fuel, 1000 cylinders and a new MAZ for motor-vehicle refueling".
Besides in the nearest future the storage terminal for 150 c. m of Russian gas will be finished in Itrapis village. The heating problem in South Ossetia has been solved. Even if Transcam - the major motor highway connecting the republic with Russia - is blocked by snow slides the fuel must be sufficient for the whole winter.
The history of the issue is this.
In August natural gas supplies from Georgia to Tskhinval were stopped (the same with electricity and water) and not only to the capital but to other regions of the republic too. Later it was stated in Tbilisi that as a result of the war the gas line had been damaged in many sections.
Neither in November nor by December had the republic any fuel. So it started accumulating timber resources very fast. Stoves were set up everywhere. The forestry industry undertook to take care of schools, nurseries and some other institutions. As Valery Jabiev, the head forester of the republic said in one of the interviews "our employees are busy preparing fuelwood for schools and nurseries. Meanwhile the people are gathering firewood by themselves and we appropriate cutting areas for these purposes. Certainly there is unauthorized cutting but we are not very tough on these violations - people have to survive".
Another heating method - electric heaters - is not very reliable. Recently due to overload the line voltage has fallen down to 160 V. Many residents of Tskhinval have decided to move to their relatives in North Ossetia for the winter period.
On November 20 Russia's envoy to OSCE Anvar Azimov appealed to the member states to demand from Georgia to stop gas blockade of South Ossetia immediately.