S. Ossetian Leader Speaks of Abolishing ‘Border’ with Russia

On the eve of the 12th anniversary of Moscow’s illegitimate recognition of the independence of Tskhinvali region/South Ossetia, Anatoly Bibilov, Kremlin-backed leader of the region spoke of “greatest possible integration” and abolition of “border” with the Russian Federation.

In his address at the celebratory event, Bibilov reiterated his support for closer ties with Russia, noting that “the border between the two of our countries, even if, at this stage, conditions for its abolition have not yet been met, has to turn into a conditional line on the map without creating artificial hurdles for moving towards the greatest possible level of integration.”

Bibilov voiced similar messages during his meeting with Marat Kulakhmentov, Russian envoy to Tskhinvali, on August 25. He said “South Ossetia remains committed to the vector of development towards Russian Federation”

On his part, Kulakhmetov, chief-peacekeeper-turned-envoy, commended the progressive development of the “republic” in all directions and expressed his satisfaction with Bibilov’s support towards “rapprochement with Russia.” “The Russian Federation will support the strengthening of South Ossetia’s statehood in every way, as well as ensuring its defense potential and security,” noted Kulakhmetov.

Marking the event, Russian Deputy Economy Minister Mikhail Babich wrote a congratulatory letter to Bibilov, highlighting that “by joint efforts, we will continue to develop constructive bilateral [Russian-S. Ossetian] cooperation in all areas, as well as mutually beneficial integration processes.”

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.

This post is also available in: ქართული (Georgian) Русский (Russian)


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