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Medvedev says Russia met all Georgia ceasefire obligations2008-10-10 19:15
Russia has fulfilled all its commitments under the ceasefire deal for Georgia, Russian President Dmitry Medvedev said on Friday, reports RIA-Novosti.gt-en-newsitem-inside
"We have done all that was expected of us, we have fulfilled all the commitments we undertook," Medvedev said in Bishkek, the capital of Kyrgyzstan.
The Russian and French presidents, Dmitry Medvedev and Nicolas Sarkozy, agreed in September that Russia's full withdrawal from undisputed parts of Georgia would come no later than October 10. On October 1, the European Union deployed some 200 observers in Russian buffer zones near South Ossetia and Abkhazia.
On Thursday, Russia officially notified the EU that it had completed the full withdrawal of its peacekeepers from buffer zones adjacent to South Ossetia and Abkhazia. However it still has several thousand troops inside the breakaway regions. Moscow says they are needed to prevent further violence while Georgia calls them an occupying force.
Georgia claims that Russia will not be in compliance with the ceasefire deal until it pulls its troops back to positions held before August's five-day war. Moscow, which plans to station some 7,600 soldiers in the two rebel regions, says its withdrawal from the buffer zones means it is already in compliance with the terms of the ceasefire.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov earlier said Russia's plans to station troops in the republics were legal in light of its recognition of South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states on August 26.
Tbilisi attacked South Ossetia on August 7-8 in an attempt to regain control over the republic, which, along with Abkhazia, split from Georgia in the early 1990s. A number of Russian peacekeepers and a reported 1,600 South Ossetian civilians lost their lives during Georgia's attack on Tskhinvali, the tiny capital of the breakaway province.