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22 Sep, 2009 05:55

EU to blame Georgia for the South Ossetian war

An independent international commission working for the EU has put the blame for last summer's war in South Ossetia on Georgia, but claim part of the responsibility also lies with Russia.

That's according to the German news magazine Der Spiegel, which has published a preview of a report from an independent EU commission.

According to diplomats in Brussels who are familiar with the contents of the secret document, the EU experts concluded that Tbilisi is responsible for causing last year's five-day conflict. However, they also believe that “Moscow escalated the conflict through its massive deployment of troops”.

The publishing of official report was expected in late July. But for now the commission wants to keep its findings under wraps until later to first present its results to UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon in New York. Only then will the EU states, as well as the participants of the conflict, be informed of the contents of the report.

The commission, appointed by the EU on the initiative of German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier, is headed by celebrated Swiss diplomat Heidi Tagliavini. Georgian President Mikheil Saakashvili has already complained that “some idiots say we started the war.”

The armed conflict broke out in August 2008, when Georgia started shelling the South Ossetian capital Tskhinval. Russia intervened and later recognized the republic's independence.