Georgia plans to attack Abkhazia – Russia

Russia has information that Georgia is planning a military attack on Abkhazia to seize the capital Sukhumi, the Deputy Chief of the Russian General Staff, Colonel General Anatoly Nogovitsyn, told a media briefing in Mosc

“We have received serious intelligence information, and we shall discuss in detail the Georgian-Abkhazian direction on Tuesday,” he said.

“The information is serious. If many media outlets still see Russia as the aggressor in the South Ossetian direction, the plan for seizing Sukhumi is so clear that we shall be able to prove that Georgia was the aggressor in the second direction as well,” he added.

Nogovitsyn said that according to the South Ossetian parliament, Georgia’s attack on South Ossetia claimed the lives of 2,100 civilians.

Russia is ready to provide substantial evidence in international courts that it was Georgia that initiated the aggression in the Georgia-South Ossetia conflict zone, said Nogovitsyn.

He also added that the situation around Abkhazia and South Ossetia “is changing rather quickly”.

He announced the Russian side is performing peacekeeping functions near the port of Poti in strict compliance with the six principles agreed by the Russian and French presidents, Dmitry Medvedev and Nicolas Sarkozy.

He said Russia will not exceed the number of its peacekeepers in South Ossetia defined by international agreements, adding it’s “a matter of principle” for Russia.

At the same time Russia will not allow air reconnaissance activities in the area of responsibility of Russian peacekeepers in the Georgia-South Ossetia conflict zone, Nogovitsyn said - “I am just giving warning that we will not allow Georgia to conduct reconnaissance work with impunity. We reserve the right to respond appropriately.”

Nogovitsyn said that NATO member countries are continuing to build up a naval group in the Black Sea, and currently there are nine vessels belonging to the alliance, including two from the U.S., one from Spain, Germany and Poland each, and four from Turkey.

“These actions are increasing the degree of tension in the region,” stressed Nogovitsyn.