Sunday, October 01, 2006

Putin Heightens Georgia Tensions

It looks as though Moscow may be preparing to make a strong response to the arrest of its intelligence officers in Tbilisi. Putin has begun to use extremely unguarded language, accusing the Georgian government of "terrorism", employing inverted Stalinist metaphors, and threatening unspecified measures.

This does not look good for the further outcome of the crisis.

At the same time, however, in a typical move, Putin has called for the withdrawal of Russian federal troops from Georgia to continue (

There is a BBC report to be found here.

Less is now being heard of the UN initiative pressed by Moscow a few days ago, mainly aimed at securing a condemnation of Georgia in favour of the Russian side.

The Reuters report includes an official Georgian response to Putin's remarks:
Georgian parliamentarian Giga Bokeria, a close ally of President Mikhail Saakashvili, called Putin's statement "an act of open aggression and hysteria".

"Russia just cannot stand the fact that Georgia is an independent country," he told Reuters.
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