The Moscow-backed leader of Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia, Anatoly Bibilov told RES news agency that he supports the recent proposal of Russian “For Truth” to hold a referendum on annexing Tskhinvali region into Russia.
“We, the Ossetians are the patriots of Russia, as we have always considered her our homeland,” Bibilov said in an interview released on July 14, adding that “I am all for accession into Russia, both as the President, and as an Ossetian.”
Commenting on Abkhaz leaders’ apparent outrage at the same proposal, Bibilov said “each republic has its own path and choice of future development. But I could only speak on behalf of my people.”
“The will of the South Ossetian people has always been to join Russia and to unify the people of Ossetia. And it was precisely for joining Russia – the basis of my platform – that the South Ossetian people voted for me in the last elections,” Bibilov concluded.
Moscow recognized the independence of Abkhazia and Tskhinvali Region/South Ossetia on August 26, 2008, two weeks after the end of the Russo-Georgian war. Syria, Venezuela, Nauru, and Nicaragua are the only other nations that recognize the two regions’ independence from Georgia. Tbilisi and most of the international community regard the two regions as part of Georgia.
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