Morgan Ortagus, Spokesperson of the US Department of State spoke about Russia’s occupation of Georgia’s territories during the briefing in connection with the 11th anniversary of August 2008 Russia-Georgia war.
“It has been 11 years since Russia’s military invasion of Georgia when hundreds were killed or injured and over 190,000 civilians were displaced. For many, the impact of the conflict continues. Livelihoods remain destroyed; families remain separated; freedom of movement has not been restored, and property has not been returned. Within the last 24 hours, we received reports that Russian-backed de facto authorities have started the process of borderization at a village near a South Ossetia administrative boundary line. If completed, this action would cut the village off from its irrigation system. These actions are a threat to peace and stability.
As today’s actions show, Russia consistently violates the Georgian people’s right to security and property. Further, Russia’s invasion and occupation of 20 percent of Georgian territory is in stark violation of the UN – of the principles of the UN Charter, the Helsinki Final Act, and the fundamental norms and principles of international law.
We urge the Russian Federation to reverse its recognition of the so-called independence of Georgia’s occupied Abkhazia and South Ossetia regions. We call upon the Russian Federation to implement in full the EU-mediated August 2008 ceasefire agreement to withdraw its forces from the occupied territories of Georgia and to affirm and to implement a commitment not to use force against Georgia.
We will not stop working until Russia ends its occupation of sovereign Georgian territory. We support the right of hundreds of thousands of IDPs and refugees to return to their home safely and with dignity. Finally, we stand with the Georgian people and welcome the day we can commemorate the end of Russia’s occupation of their territory,” Morgan Ortagus said during the briefing.