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Russia has stationed its forces just 25 miles (40 kilometers) from the Georgian capital, in violation of the EU-brokered cease-fire that ended last year's brief war. And in recent weeks, it has sent even more troops and armored vehicles to within striking distance of the city ahead of street protests against Georgia's president.
OSCE and other observers are all over the place- so somebody would have noticed
European Union and OSCE monitors who patrol the boundary lines are not allowed into South Ossetia or Abkhazia, and journalists also are stopped at the Russian checkpoints.
Originally posted by maloy
reply to post by makeitso
They still have a pretty good idea of what is going on at the border. If there would be any sizeable movement by Russian troops, it would not remain secret.
Some Russian news sources confirmed, however, that the Russian military is reinforcing the administrative borders of Abkhazia and South Ossetia supposedly to prevent a spillover of tensions from Georgia
the composition of the naval force that disembarked from Sevastopol is not secret, since the Ukrainian authorities must be informed. It seems to be larger than the force that was deployed against Georgia last August. Four large amphibious landing craft left Sevastopol last week, while in August 2008 only two were reportedly deployed to insert a regiment of marines into Abkhazia in the small port of Ochamchira, close to the border with Georgia (Vlast, August 18). The marines were later deployed in the invasion of Western Georgia.
Relations between Russia and Nato took a turn for the worse yesterday as the military alliance began war games in Georgia.
Russia ordered two Nato diplomats to leave the country in response to the expulsion of two of its envoys at the alliance’s headquarters in Brussels over a spying scandal.
The diplomatic retaliation appeared timed to coincide with the start of Nato’s military exercises in Georgia, a day after President Saakashvili put down a mutiny by a tank battalion of 500 troops at a base outside the capital, Tbilisi.
TBILISI (AFP) — Thousands of protesters rallied in the Georgian capital Saturday as opposition leaders pressed for a meeting with President Mikheil Saakashvili after a month of demonstrations demanding his ouster.
In a show of strength on the one-month anniversary of the start of protests, about 20,000 opposition supporters gathered outside parliament in central Tbilisi, calling for the president to resign by chanting "Misha Go!"
The protest came after the government and opposition leaders on Friday failed to make any progress in resolving the political stand-off during their first talks since protests began.
Talks between Saakashvili and four opposition leaders on Monday ended without result. Saakashvili offered joint reforms, his opponents demanded he resign. The president cautioned he would "not allow anyone to shake our statehood", block roads, or infringe the rights of others for political gain.
Current protests are testing the patience of the police, who dispersed mass demonstrations against Saakashvili in 2007 with rubber bullets, beatings and tear gas and closed an opposition television station at gunpoint, angering Georgia's Western backers.
Saakashvili is wary of a repeat, particularly with NATO conducting month-long military exercises at an air base 25 km (15 miles) from the capital -- "a clear signal of support to the ruling regime," Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin said on Sunday.