Russia not to consult Saakashvili on buffer zone in breakaway region

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Moscow, Aug 22 (UNI) Russia will not hold any consultations with Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili on the parameters of the buffer zones in Georgia's breakaway regions of Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

''We will not consult with Mr Saakashvili on the buffer zone,'' Russian General Staff's Deputy Chief Anatoly Nogovitsyn told mediapersons here today.

Nogovitsyn said Russian peacekeepers were stationed in Abkhazia and South Ossetia in compliance with international and bilateral agreements, and that Georgia, by launching its aggression against South Ossetia, unilaterally violated the agreements.

''By starting the aggression, this President declared a unilateral violation of the existing agreements. Now he has neither the moral, nor the legal right to dictate terms. We do not see Georgian peacekeepers here,'' he said, noting that the peacekeeping operation would be performed by Russian peacekeepers.

''Concerning the moods of this kind, they are on his conscience.

He had ample opportunity to fulfill the peacekeeping mission. He himself gave it up,'' Nogovitsyn said, referring to the Georgian President's statement that the buffer zones in Abkhazia and South Ossetia were unacceptable for Tbilisi.

He also accused Georgia of preparing for military action in Abkhazia and South Ossetia.

''We have registered an increase in Georgia's reconnaissance activities and preparations for armed actions in the Georgian-South Ossetian conflict zone,'' the Deputy Chief said.

Russia said the withdrawal of combat troops from Georgia was going according to plan and it was not prepared to increase the speed of the operation.

Moscow has set itself a deadline of tonight to withdraw to ''a buffer zone'' in Georgia, around the breakaway regions.

It plans a ''permanent presence'' there, with around 2,000 troops inside Georgia as peacekeepers.

Mr Saakashvili has declared that Georgia would not accept any ''annexation'' of its land by Russia.


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