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Russia Condemns OSCE Report on Georgia (18.07.12)

The acceptance of a report on Georgia by the Parliamentary Assembly of the Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) demonstrates its reluctance to recognize the new realities resulting from the increasingly complex situation in the Caucasus since 2008, preventing the OSCE from furthering peace in the region, the Russian Foreign Ministry said on Saturday.

The resolution "uses worn-out propagandistic cliches about 'occupied Georgian territories,'" the Foreign Ministry said.

The Parliamentary Assembly of the OSCE accepted a resolution on Georgia on July 9 in which Abkhazia and South Ossetia were were described as "occupied territories." The document also contains a call for introduction of international observers to be brought into the region and restoration of the OSCE mission in Georgia,following the expiry of its mandate in December 2008.

"The majority of deputies in the Assembly (Parliamentary Assembly of the OSCE) once again don't wish to objectively accept the realities of the situation today in the Caucasus," the Foreign Ministry said on its website. "Such an approach, unfortunately, deprives the OSCE of the ability to make a constructive contribution to boosting peace and stability in the region," the Ministry added.

"The Russian delegation firmly opposed this tendentious document, declaring it absolutely unacceptable," the Ministry said.

Abkhazia's Foreign Ministry also condemned the OSCE resolution, saying it did not take into account new realities and was based on information presented only by the Georgian side. The call to reintroduce European Union Mission observers in Abkhazia has no legal basis and contradicts the text of the Medvedev-Sarkozy agreement, the Abkhazian Foreign Ministry said.

Georgian forces attacked the breakaway region of South Ossetia on August 8, 2008. Russia sent its forces into the region to protect the citizens of South Ossetia, many of whom held Russian passports, and expelled the Georgian forces after a five-day conflict. Russia then extended formal recognition of the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia on August 26, 2008. Georgia then broke off diplomatic relations with Russia and declared the two regions as occupied territories.

Both regions had been de facto independent since breaking away from Tbilisi in the early 1990's after Georgia left the USSR in 1991.

The EU refuses to recognize the independence of Abkhazia and South Ossetia and supports the territorial integrity and sovereignty of Georgia.