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Georgia & Russia: The “Unknown” Prelude To The “Five Day War”

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Author(s): Dr Martin Malek

Journal: Caucasian Review of International Affairs
ISSN 1865-6773

Volume: 3;
Issue: 2;
Start page: 227;
Date: 2009;
Original page

Keywords: Russia | Georgia | South Ossetia | Abkhazia | preparations to war

ABSTRACT
The Russian Armed Forces not only expelled invading Georgian troops from the separatist region South Ossetia, but they also entered Abkhazia and marched deep into Georgia proper over the course of the “five day war” in August 2008. The following report analyses Russia’s military preparations since spring 2008, an aspect hitherto almost unknown among politicians, the media and the public in Western Europe and North America. They included the shooting down of a Georgian drone by Russian fighter jets over Abkhazia, a massive increase of Russian “peacekeeping troops” along the Georgian-Abkhaz armistice line, the deployment of Russian railway troops to Abkhazia and the “Kavkaz 2008” military exercises. These developments occurred against the backdrop of political events, such as demands made by the Russian State Duma to recognise South Ossetia and Abkhazia as independent states, Russia’s decision to withdraw from the CIS economic embargo against Abkhazia and NATO’s refusal to offer membership to Georgia.
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