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Russia Rejects Charges Against Troops In South Ossetia

30 November 2005 -- Russia rejected claims that its peacekeeping contingent in South Ossetia is involved in anti-Georgian terrorist acts and other criminal operations.

Russian Foreign Ministry spokesman Mikhail Kamynin said these accusations complicate relations between Moscow and Tbilisi and make negotiations between Georgia and South Ossetia more difficult.

The Georgian Interior Ministry on 26 November accused South Ossetian separatist leaders of being involved in drug and human trafficking. It also reiterated claims that Russian peacekeepers are arming South Ossetia and are being used as a cover for anti-Georgian intelligence operations.

The Georgian Defense Ministry posted a new military strategy on its website. It lists the Russian troops in South Ossetia and Abkhazia among the threats to national security. The document says two Russian military bases constitute an additional threat.



Copyright (c) 2005. RFE/RL, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty, 1201 Connecticut Ave., N.W. Washington DC 20036.

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