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Medvedev’s visit to Tskhinval: a bolt from the blue14.07.2009 | 15:51
The Russian media keep commenting upon the RF President Dmitri Medvedev's short visit to South Ossetia. Practically all the periodicals stress the fact that this visit was just like a bolt from the blue for both the young state's authorities and the common citizens.
"Dmitri Medvedev's visit to Tskhinval was prepared and held in an atmosphere of complete secrecy", - Commersant reports. - In the morning, the RF president arrived by plane at a military airdrome in Mozdok and then went to Tskhinval by helicopter. This flight resembled the visits paid by the US and British officials to Iraq; they were reported post factum for reasons of security".
According to the newspaper, head of South Ossetia Eduard Kokoity became aware of the distinguished guest's visit less than an hour before it started.
Minister of Press and Mass Communications of South Ossetia Irina Gagloeva told the correspondent of the Newspaper that "Dmitri Anatolyevitch's arrival became a pleasant surprise not only for the common citizens but for many officials as well. For example, I did not know he was going to arrive today; still, we all applauded your president in expression of gratitude for the recognition of our sovereignty".
The Komsomolskaya Pravda newspaper reports an interesting detail: "The visit turned out to be so much unexpected for the local officials that they did not even know whom they were going to meet, in fact. It had only been stated that a senior official was expected to come from Moscow and the South-Ossetian ministers were waiting for another inspector. Thus, the moment Medvedev came out of the helicopter Tskhinval was simply shocked".
Nevertheless, the RF president was received according to the local customs: at the door of the Government house, he was met with three pies and a wooden bowl of beer.
During his meeting with Eduard Kokoity, the Russian president stated that both countries have got a great future before them.
Besides, as Commersant notes, Dmitri Medvedev alluded at the fact that the restoration of South Ossetia after the last August war should be completed in time. These words give a reason to suppose that the Russian president decided to find out personally why even the half of the ruined dwelling has not been restored within the last year.
Indeed, the city is still in ruins despite the fact that Moscow extended substantial credits for the restoration of the accommodation sector.
Having made an inspection of the construction sites in Tskhinval, President Medvedev together with the head of South Ossetia Eduard Kokoity and the RF Minister of Defense of Russia Serdukov visited the fourth military base of the RF Ministry of Defense, where Commander of Troops of the North-Caucasian military district Sergey Makarov made a report to the president as to the current state of affairs at the base and the main tasks it is carrying out. "Today, the military base is able to perform any tasks that have been set", - Commander stated.
Sergey Makarov also underlined that the military base headquarters are fully staffed, the majority of the officers having got combat experience.
In its broadcasting of Dmitri Medvedev's visit to the military base, the Public Russian TV Company paid attention to the fact that the president made inquiries as to the servicemen's everyday life and board. This was obviously an answer to the Georgian propagandistic attacks based upon deserter Glukhov's statement that he had been allegedly given no meat for several months.
It is no coincidence that Medvedev focused on defense during his visit to Tskhinval. "We have not only got a great past but a sound regulatory structure as well. We have got a number of projects related to recovery of economy and social sphere in the republic, and we are surely going to realize them, for there is still plenty of work to do. Besides, we have got a necessity for maintaining cooperation in the field of defense confirmed by a relevant treaty", - Dmitri Medvedev told leader of the republic Eduard Kokoity.
The military support promised by President Medvedev to Tskhinval in the context of Tbilisi's revanchism must bring certainty to the people of the republic as to the fact that the last year events are not going to recur.
According to Deputy Chief of General Staff of the Russian Armed Forces General-Colonel Anatoli Nagovitsin, the Russian servicemen in South Ossetia "are able to perform the set tasks, that is, to provide inviolability of the boundaries and security of the people, as well as to neutralize any military dangers on the part of the Georgian authorities initiated under the pretext of resuming Georgia's territorial integrity".
As Eduard Kokoity stated, Russia has come to the republic "for long, having brought peace". He also believes that "the current situation in South Ossetia is much better than it had been before the last August events, though the threat of provocative actions on the part of Georgia is our everyday reality".