Medvedev Orders an End to Russian Attacks in Georgia

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Russian President Dmitry Medvedev announced in a nationally televised speech on Tuesday that he had ordered an end to the military campaign in Georgia, saying that the Russian military had punished Georgia and restored security.  Various skirmishes had continued overnight Monday but no major offensives on either side were being reported.

From the BBC: Medvedev’s statement included:

“I’ve decided to finish the operation to force the Georgian authorities to peace. The safety of our peacekeeping forces and civilian population has been restored.

“The aggressor has been punished, having sustained considerable losses. Its armed forces have been disorganised”

However, Medvedev also ordered the Russian military to put down any resistance from Georgian forces and continue to engage any Georgian aggressive action.  The Kremlim had strong words for Georgia’s President Mikhail Saakashvili, as the Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov said that he would not meet with or speak to Georgia’s president, and that Saakashvili had “better go.”  

The Russian announcement came after an escalation Monday that brought Russian troops into western Georgia on a second front.  They attacked from the northwestern province of Abkhazia, another pro-Russian province of Georgia.  From there the Russian military continued toward Gori in central Georgia, and controlling a critical east-west highway which Saakashvili described as cutting his country in two.  Most of the Georgian forces continued fighting in South Ossetia, allowing Russia to move without heavy resistance from Abkhazia.  Saakashvili said that Russia had captured the city of Gori while Russia’s Defense Ministry denied it.

(from the BBC)

French President Nicolas Sarkozy went to Moscow on Tuesday to help negotiate a cease-fire plan from the European Union which Georgia has already said it supports.  The U.N. Security Council was expected to discuss cease-fire proposal put forth by France on Tuesday, but it is unclear how the Russian announcement will affect these efforts by France.  

Russia has not indicated it supports any cease-fire plan.  The announcement to end hostilities may signal that Russia feels it accomplished its goals and has no need for a cease-fire agreement.  Russia left itself with open military options in Medvedev’s statement by saying Georgian “aggression” would still be dealt with, Foreign Minister Lavrov had insisted before that Georgia sign a document pledging to not use military force in South Ossetia.  



  1. Does this mean the war is over…because Russia says it is?  I think it’s unlikely.  It seems more likely the announcement was to get Western nations to back off, and Russia felt it was winning and could continue at a scaled-down pace that might draw less attention.  

  2. After the present administration’s actions on our (“The people”‘s) behalf…

    Who are we (The ‘United States of America’) to say anything?

    bushco has totally destroyed our credibility. The voice of america is in the toilet.

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