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Georgia’s defense minister: Russia’s task is not to let us to NATO and EU

Georgia’s task is to follow the course to NATO and EU, while Russia’s task is to stop it, said Tina Khidasheli, Georgia’s defense minister of, when commenting on installation of a banner depicting South Ossetia’s border in the area near Tamarasheni and Tseronisi villages.

The minister called it “another provocation by Russia” saying that Georgia must remain unprovoked.

“I suppose Russia will continue such actions, as we have opened a NATO training center, visa regime was liberalized, Georgia has been taking steps towards NATO and many other things connected with our existence and the fact that we do not want to cease our existence. Occupation is expanding over more territories. We have only one choice: either to yield to it or say that we continue our policy and provocations will not stop us. Russia’s task is to stop us, while our goal is to follow the course to NATO and EU,” Khidasheli told reporters at the military base Vaziani in the outskirts of Tbilisi.

Earlier, the Foreign Ministry of Georgia made a statement condemning new signposts depicting the state border of South Ossetia.

“The Foreign Ministry condemns the provocative steps of Moscow that constitute threat to the security and stability and grossly violate the fundamental rights of the local population. Georgia once again urges the Russian Federation to implement its international commitments and refrain from actions escalating the situation,” the ministry said in the statement.

In addition, the Georgian Foreign Ministry called on the world community to give adequate assessment to “Russia’s illegal policy aimed against sovereignty and territorial integrity of Georgia,” as well as take adequate measures to maintain security and stability.

As EADaily reported earlier, the South Ossetian State Security Committee (SSC) press office informed on August 7, that the frontier service of the committee placed a new border sign depicting the state border with Georgia in the area of Tsinagar, Leningorsky region.  According to the source, the border sign was placed in the same area where on July 14 “a group of offensive-minded citizens of Georgia” dismantled the border sign.

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